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UKfamsol, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 560
Experience:  Very experienced specialist family law solicitor, qualifed in 1994
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. I married a man on student visa 2 years ago. I was born

Customer Question

Hi. I married a man on student visa 2 years ago. I was born here in uk so I am a UK citizen. We have recently separated but he has refused to let me divorce him. I have no contact with him nor do I know where he lives. No one in my family has ever been divorced so I don't even know where to start or what to do as I can't get hold of him or try to discuss the divorce. He wants to stay in uk so won't let me divorce him
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  UKfamsol replied 2 years ago.

Hello and thanks for your question.

You are entitled to divorce your husband whether or not he agrees to a divorce, as long as you have been married for at least a year.

You can base your divorce on his behaviour.

You will need a certified copy of your marriage certificate which you can obtain from the Registry of Births Marraiges and Deaths that registered your marriage, for about £10.

You will need to complete a divorce petition, here:

You need to take the original plus 3 copies to your nearest county court, plus your marriage certificate plus the court fee of £410. If there are no unforeseen delays, then it would normally take about 6 months from the date the court receives your divorce petition, to the date the court grants your decree absolute.

However, your husband (he is the respondent, you are the petitioner) is entitled to receive a copy of the divorce papers, which means that the court will want an address for him, in order to serve the papers on him by post.

It is possible to ask the court to dispense with service on the respondent - but the court will want to be satisfied that you have tried to find an address for him first without success, before agreeing.

I use Steve Akal at Stephensons, enquiry agents, to trace people's addresses - his charges are very reasonable, he is very efficient and he is pleasant to deal with. Here's his website:

Although he is based in Leeds,he has contacts throughout the UK and abroad.

If he cannot find the address, and no one you know has your husband's address (but please do not take any step that would put you at any risk of any harm whatsoever), then you can apply to court for service of the divorce poetiton to be dispensed with. Here's the form:

The court fee is £50.

I hope this helps and I wish you the best of luck.

Thanks and best wishes...