Get a legal separation


To get a legal separation, you need to fill in a separation petition and send it to the court.

A legal separation allows you to live apart, without divorcing or ending a civil partnership.

Because of coronavirus (COVID-19), legal separation applications are taking longer than usual to process.

You can ask for a legal separation for the same reasons you could file for a divorce or end a civil partnership.

However, you do not need to show that the marriage or civil partnership has broken down irretrievably.

You may want a legal separation if:

  • you have religious reasons against divorce

  • you’ve been married or in a civil partnership for less than a year

  • you want time and space to work out if you want to end the marriage or civil partnership

Fill in a judicial separation petition - form D8.

Send 3 copies of the petition to your nearest divorce center, and keep your own copy. You need to include a certified copy of your marriage or civil partnership certificate when you send the form.

Getting a legal separation costs £365.