What needs to happen before completing Form D84?
Before completing a D84 Divorce Form, there are several steps to follow. Under the current no-fault divorce process, which came into force in April 2022, divorcing parties first need to file for divorce by submitting an application to HMCTS. This can be done online or by using a paper form. A fee of £593 must also be paid. Applications can be made solely or jointly. To qualify for no-fault divorce, all of the following must apply for couples who are married or in a civil partnership:
· Been married for over a year
· The relationship must have permanently broken down, and
· The marriage must be legally recognised in the UK (this includes same-sex marriage).
Along with the fee, applicants also need to provide:
· The full name and address of both parties
· The original marriage certificate or a certified copy, and
· If applicable, evidence of any name change (if changed since getting married).
Once the application is received by the court, it will be checked and validated to ensure the above conditions have been met. If so, they will send a) a notice that the divorce application has been issued (i.e. sent out), b) a copy of the application stamped by HMCTS, and c) a case number. Both parties will be sent an ‘acknowledgement of service’ notification. If a sole application was made, the other party then has 14 days to respond to this letter. In the case of a joint application, there is no need for the other party to respond.
When do I need to complete Form D84 for Conditional Order?
You will need to complete a D84 form when you want to apply for a Decree Nisi or Conditional Order. Both the Conditional Order and Decree Nisi are formal legal documents issued by the court confirming that they do not see any reason why divorce cannot proceed. Under the new process, the earliest you can apply for a Conditional Order is 20 weeks after the court issues (sends out) the divorce application. You can apply for a Conditional Order either using the HMCTS online service or using the D84 paper form.
How to Complete a D84 Form
If you’re unsure of how to fill in a D84 Form as a sole applicant, you will be asked to provide the following information:
· Your full name
· Whether you are applying for divorce, dissolution, or judicial separation
· Whether the other party (i.e. the respondent) filed an acknowledgement of service (and whether they used the paper version to do so)
· Who signed the acknowledgement of service, the respondent or their legal representative? If the respondent, a copy of the acknowledgement of service must be provided with Form D84
· Confirmation that you recognise the statement of truth signature on the acknowledgement of service as that of your spouse or civil partner
· If the respondent has not filed an acknowledgement of service, evidence of service should be provided, e.g., a certificate of service (FP6).
· Any changes that you may want to make to any statement in the application for divorce/dissolution/(judicial) separation
· Confirmation that everything stated is true, and
· A statement of truth including signature, full name, and date (of one or both parties).
If applying jointly, the names of both applicants must be provided.
What happens after Form D84 is submitted?
Once you have submitted a D84 Form, the court will review the application. If the mandatory 20 weeks have passed, the application has been completed correctly, and all parts of the process have been completed, the court will issue a Conditional Order certificate. It is important to bear in mind that it can take several weeks for the court to process form D84 applications. The certificate will set out the time and date that the Conditional Order was granted by the court. Remember, you are still married even if you received a Conditional Order. Your marriage will only be formally ended once you receive a Final Order. To apply for a Final Order, you will need to wait another 43 days (i.e. 6 weeks and 1 day).
Using the no-fault divorce process, the amount of time it takes to file for divorce, apply for a Conditional Order using form D84, and then apply for a Final Order is at least 6 months. This may take longer if there are delays in the handling of the application or if one party does not cooperate with the process. A divorce law Solicitor can guide you through the process and ensure that each step is completed smoothly while ensuring you receive the best possible outcome regarding child arrangements, spousal maintenance, and your marital assets, including your money and home.
Guillaumes LLP Solicitors is a full-service law firm based in Weybridge, Surrey. We have a highly experienced divorce law team who can assist you with all divorce matters. To make an appointment, please call us on 01932 840 111.