If separation is not working for you, it may be necessary to dissolve your marriage entirely and agree a way forward which allows you and your spouse to move to the future on separate paths.

What is Divorce?
Divorce (or the dissolution of marriage) is the final termination of a marital union, canceling the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage and dissolving the bonds of matrimony between the parties. In most countries divorce requires the sanction of a court or other authority in a legal process. The legal process for divorce may also involve issues of spousal support, child custody, child support, distribution of property and division of debt.

The Divorce Process
Wait for four years.
You must have lived apart for at least four of the five years before divorce proceedings are issued. You do not necessarily have to have been living in separate houses.

Live in Ireland.
You can’t seek an Irish divorce unless at least one of you is domiciled in the Republic of Ireland or has lived in the country for a year before bringing proceedings.

Break up, and stay broken up.
The Court must be satisfied that there’s no reasonable prospect of reconciliation and that both of you (and any children) are properly provided for.

See a solicitor.
We have a panel of the best family law solicitors in Ireland and we will recommend two firms for you to meet. If we receive any complaints/concerns about the solicitors they will be investigated, and if necessary removed from the panel. We ensure that their fee structure is lower in price than their competitors.

Apply for the divorce.
Most applications will be made to the Circuit Court, but the more difficult cases (or the ones involving a great deal of money) will be dealt with by the High Court.

About 5,000 people a year apply for divorce in Ireland.

Try to sort out the issues.
Try and resolve the main issues before you arrive in Court. Try and agree what to do with the family home. Try and sort out the financial position: maintenance, pensions, inheritance. Normally the working spouse will make periodical payments for the spouse who stays at home with the children.

Have your day in Court.
The Court hearing is in private and relatively informal. If everything has been worked out in advance, the hearing should be reasonably brief. If you have fulfilled the legal requirements, you are both entitled to a divorce, however badly the other spouse may have behaved. But, when the Court makes financial or property orders, it is entitled to take into account the conduct of either of you.