Guide to the divorce process

Divorce is a difficult process – emotionally, financially, and legally – so it should not be considered unless all other options have been exhausted. However, if you decide to dissolve your marriage, these are the steps in Ireland:

  1. Live apart for two years: You must have been living apart for two of the previous three years to have a valid case for divorce
  2. You must have no prospect of reconciliation.
  3. At least one of you must live in Ireland to secure a divorce in Ireland
  4. Consult a solicitor. You are entitled to bring a divorce action yourself, but the law around divorce can be complicated, especially if yours is not a straightforward case. An experienced solicitor can guide you through the process with the minimum of stress.
  5. Look at your options. Your solicitor is required to inform you about the alternative options of reconciliation, mediation, and separation.
  6. Apply for a divorce. Most divorce cases are heard in the Circuit Court, but high net worth divorce cases may go to the High Court. The volume of applications going through the system means that you may have to wait many months for your case to come up.
  7. Go to court. The court hearing is usually brief if everything has been worked out in advance. If the court makes financial or property orders, it may take the conduct of either spouse into account. 

Things to Consider When Applying for a Divorce Decree

  • The court may review previous arrangements, including separation agreements, when deciding on your divorce application. In fact divorce after legal separation should be relatively straightforward because issues relating to childrenproperty, and maintenance will have been addressed previously. 
  • A decree of divorce is irreversible. You may apply to the court to review maintenance, access, and other issues after the divorce has been granted, however.
  • Irish residents may apply for divorce in Ireland, even if they were married in a different country.

HOMS Assist have extensive experience in the area of divorce and your rights and entitlements in this difficult process. We are skilled negotiators and will only seek recourse through the courts if we believe it is the best route to optimise the outcome for you.

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2-4 Ely Place, Dublin 2, D02 FR58


Bishopsgate, Henry Street, Limerick, V94 K5R6


1A South Mall, Cork, T12 PV44

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