Q&As

What is the procedure to make an application for an order staying decree absolute under the inherent jurisdiction of the court? Which form should be used and what is the court fee?

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Produced in partnership with Nicholas Starks of St Ives Chambers
Published on LexisPSL on 11/01/2018

The following Family Q&A produced in partnership with Nicholas Starks of St Ives Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • What is the procedure to make an application for an order staying decree absolute under the inherent jurisdiction of the court? Which form should be used and what is the court fee?

What is the procedure to make an application for an order staying decree absolute under the inherent jurisdiction of the court? Which form should be used and what is the court fee?

Sections 8–10A of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 set out bespoke the circumstances in which the decree nisi might not be made absolute. However, none of those are directly applicable to an application by one of the spouses to hold up decree absolute outside of such circumstances.

It appears accepted that the court has an inherent jurisdiction to postpone pronouncement of decree absolute (Miller-Smith v Miller Smith and Thakkar v Thakkar). However, those cases demonstrate that an application to hold up decree absolute will only be granted in special or exceptional circumstances. See Practice Note: Decree absolute—divorce.

Neither of those cases prescribed a particular form of application, nor is any prescribed specifically by the Family Procedure Rules 2010, SI 2010/2955 (FPR 2010). This means that a

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