Procedure following service of the petition
Procedure following service of the petition

The following Family guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Procedure following service of the petition
  • Acknowledgment of service
  • Answer
  • Respondent's petition
  • Facts sufficient on which to grant a decree

Acknowledgment of service

The respondent must file the acknowledgement of service (Form D10) indicating whether or not they intend to defend the divorce, within seven days beginning with the date on which the application for a matrimonial order was served. That period of time is extended if the petition is being served out of the jurisdiction. The table in the Family Procedure Rules 2010 (FPR 2010), PD 6B sets out the extended periods of time for each country.

The acknowledgment of service must:

  1. be signed by the respondent or the respondent's legal representative or, where relevant the co-respondent or the co-respondent's legal representative, save that the acknowledgment of service must be signed by the respondent personally where the application for a matrimonial order:

    1. alleges that the respondent has committed adultery and the respondent admits the adultery, or

    2. is relying on two years separation by consent and the respondent consents to the making of the matrimonial order

  2. include the respondent's or, as the case may be, the co-respondent's address for service, and

  3. indicate whether or not the respondent intends to defend the case

Once an answer is filed, the case becomes defended.