How much does a divorce cost? Start-Finish

By January 29, 2019
money divorce

How much does a divorce cost start to finish?

Divorce costs can vary massively depending on your situation and circumstances. Many people believe they have no option but to pay thousands of pounds but this is simply not true. This post will show you how you can keep your divorce costs as low as possible and even save over £750.

This post will outline what actions are carried out and why some people have to pay additional charges. Additional charges are unexpected costs that you may have to pay depending on your situation.

There are 4 steps to divorce, these are as follows:
1. Filing For Divorce
2. Acknowledgement of Service
3. Application for Decree Nisi
4. Application for Decree Absolute

1.Filing for divorce

Your biggest cost will be filing your divorce petition. The amount you spend is all down to the type of service you choose. You will have also to pay Court fees which are currently £550 however if you earn a low income you could be entitled to court fee exemption. Depending on how you choose to file for divorce will depend on how you pay your fees.

Here are a few options:

High Street Solicitor

The average high-street solicitor divorce will cost you £950 + £550 (court fees) totalling £1500. It’s important to note that many high-street solicitors will also charge you hourly and many are prone to hidden charges.

In most cases you will pay your fees directly to your solicitor and they will process them and your divorce.

DIY Divorce

If you want to file your own divorce then it will cost you £550 (court fees). However, although the initial payment is drastically less than a high street solicitor, costs soon add up if you do not file it correctly. It will also take up the majority of your time and become very stressful.

If you choose to file a DIY Divorce you will have to pay the court fees to your chosen court yourself.

Online Divorce Service

Using an online divorce service like Quicke divorce will cost you on average £189 + £550 (court fees). This ensures that your papers are filed correctly and will save you time, money and stress.

No matter what type of divorce service you choose there are mandatory court fees amounting to £550. This is payable at the start of your divorce.

You may be exempt from paying court fees if you are on a low income. Check out the Government Website to find out more. The court fee exemption form is called an EX160A.

You will pay your fees directly to your divorce provider and they will process them for you.

2. Acknowledgement of service

Once your divorce petition has been sent off and processed by the court they will then send out a copy to the respondent.

The respondent will then have to respond to the divorce petition within 8 days. The respondent is able to agree, defend or ignore the petition.

Defending a divorce petition

If the respondent chooses to defend the divorce petition then they will have to respond with a form explaining why they do not agree with the divorce petition and may have to pay £245 in court fees.

The respondent may be exempt from paying court fees if earning a low income.

If they defend the divorce petition a court hearing will be set where both parties will have to come to an agreement.

If the respondent ignores the petition then you will have to get the papers served to them. You can either choose a bailiff company to do this for you or ask the court. The application to have the papers served by the courts is called a D89. This may add additional time and cost to your divorce proceedings.

Wrong address/missing spouse

If you could not find your spouses’ current address the acknowledgement of service will be sent back. If you are unable to find their new address then you may have to ask the court to find them.

If this is the case you have 2 options:

1. Apply for the petition to be sent in another way
2. Contact your regional divorce centre to apply for a search of other government departments to get their address

Both of these services will cost £50 in court fees and it’s important to note that they may still not be able to find your spouse.

It’s always best to try and find their current address yourself by asking friends, family, or work colleges. This will save you having to pay additional costs.

3.Application for Decree Nisi

Once you have applied for your decree nisi the courts will process your application. If they see no good reason why you should not get a divorce then they will grant you a decree nisi.

Once your decree nisi has been granted you will have to wait a mandatory 6 weeks to apply for your decree absolute.

4. Application for Decree Absolute

The application for the decree absolute is the final step to your divorce. There are never usually any costs involved in this process and is just a case of waiting for your decree Absolute to be delivered.

However, if the petitioner has not made an application for the decree absolute the respondent is able to apply for it. The respondent will have to pay £155 and wait an additional 3 months.

What’s the Cheapest way to file for divorce?

We get asked this a lot here at Quicke Divorce. The cheapest and quickest way to get divorced is by filing an amicable, uncontested divorce using a managed divorce service. This means that both you and your spouse agree to the divorce and choose not file it yourself.

The reason we recommend using a managed divorce service is because everything is done for you and the people filing your divorce are very experienced making it a quick and easy process.

Do the grounds for divorce effect the overall cost of divorce?

This is another question thats asked frequently. The answer is no, it doesn’t matter which grounds for divorce you choose your divorce will cost the same as any other.


A divorce can cost you very little if you are both in argument and file an uncontested divorce.

To keep costs down it’s important to know where the respondent lives and be in an amicable situation.

High street solicitors can cost thousands; They will also charge hourly fees on top if any extra work is required.

If you are wanting to do your divorce yourself then it’s important to know what can happen and how the costs can mount up.

Quicke Divorce can offer you a fixed fee divorce, we will handle your entire divorce for you, and inform you every step of the way. This will eliminate any stress and worries you may have. Our highly qualified solicitors have many years of experience and can promise a professional service as a fraction of the cost.

Speak to one of our advisors today on 01793384032 alternatively, use our live chat feature below.


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