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Newly published divorce reform legislation includes ‘no-fault’ divorces

Newly published divorce reform legislation includes ‘no-fault’ divorces

Wednesday 08 June 2022

Newly published divorce reform legislation includes ‘no-fault’ divorces

Wednesday 08 June 2022

New legislation to modernise and simplify divorce, annulment and judicial separation proceedings has been published by the Policy & Resources Committee, and the law is expected to commence in early 2023.

The legislation will enable the introduction of no-fault divorce, remove the ability to contest a divorce and modernise the grounds for annulment, amongst others changes.

President of P&R Deputy Peter Ferbrache said the proposals “should reduce conflict and ensure our legislation in this important area of family law are modern, inclusive and better supports couples who have made the decision to end their marriages”.

Express reported on the progression of the reforms in April this year. At the time, the States said that the legislation was in the final stages of assurance.

Policy & Resources Committee

Pictured: The reforms are being led by the Policy & Resources Committee, the States most senior committee.

Deputy Ferbrache continued: “We know it is never an easy situation for either party to the marriage when matters cannot be resolved quickly and simply, and while it is not possible to remove the emotional difficulties experienced through a separation, it is possible to reduce the stressfulness of the process in most cases. 

“The introduction of no-fault divorce has long been recognised as a means to do that and accompanied by the other reforms under this new legislation, should improve the whole process.”

Once agreed by the States’ Assembly the Matrimonial Causes Reform Law of 1939 will be repealed and replaced. The completion of the drafting of the necessary Bailiwick-wide legislation to deliver the reforms was prioritised by the States as part of the Government Work Plan in 2021.


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