Re: Divorce in the 1950s
- From: ray begley <rayb@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Wed, 18 Feb 2009 20:59:58 +0000
Thank you for such a comprehensive reply Don,
greatly appreciated, so in essence if one party deserted the other
in 1950, the earliest they could legally remarry (If divorced)
would be 1955/56 (Approx) onwards.
Many thanks Don.
On Wed, 18 Feb 2009 16:27:03 +0000, Don Aitken <don-aitken@xxxxxxxxxx>
On Wed, 18 Feb 2009 10:03:57 +0000, ray begley
A question on divorce in the 1950s please.The parties agreeing would not necessarily make it easier. Divorce was
I have a couple who seperated in 1950, does anyone have any idea
on how long a divorce would have taken in that time please?
(If all parties agreed and there were no legal hold ups)
still an adversarial procedure, and "collusion" was a bar to one being
granted. However, 90% of all divorce cases were undefended, which in
practice often came to the same thing.
The main time limits were that proceedings could generally not be
brought within five years of the marriage, and that if the ground was
desertion it had to have lasted for three years. Separation in itself
was not a ground for divorce - one party had to have deserted the
other, and only the deserted party could sue. If they parted by
agreement, there could be no divorce, unless adultery or cruelty could
The big change at this time was the introduction of legal aid for
divorce, effective in 1949, which for the first time made it available
to the poor. As a result, the proportion of divorces granted to those
classified as "manual labourers" or their wives increased from
negligible to 58%. A great many of the divorces granted in the early
1950s legally terminated marriages which had actually been over for
All divorce decrees granted since 1858 are public documents, of which
anybody can get a copy - see the Court Service webaite.
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