/ Divorce / How much does a divorce cost

How much does it cost to get a divorce in Northern Ireland?

There are two types of costs that you have to take into account when calculating how much your divorce is going to cost.

Court fees: you will have to pay fees to the courts to process your application.

Professional fees: if you hire a divorce solicitor, barrister, or accountant, you will have to pay their professional fees too.

Disclaimer

This guide outlines general topics you should be thinking about if you want to get a divorce in Northern Ireland. But it is not legal advice. If you need legal advice, you should contact a specialist divorce solicitor for advice on your specific circumstances.

How much does it cost to get a divorce in Northern Ireland?

There are two types of costs you will have to think about:

  • Court Fees – these are fees that you have to pay to the courts to have them process your divorce application. These divorce court fees are set – and in most circumstances there is no way of avoiding them (if you are on low income, the fees could be waived, but only in rare circumstances – you can find more information here).
  • Professional Fees – these are the fees that you pay to your divorce solicitor, barristers, accountants, or any other people that help you with your claim. These fees can vary, depending on who is doing the work, the complexity of the work, and how long it takes.

So, let’s calculate some numbers:

  • the court fees alone are a minimum of £622
  • if your divorce takes place in the High Court, the minimum court fees will be more again, at least £681 (we’ll talk more about High Court/County Court divorces below)
  • if you hire a divorce solicitor/barrister, you will have to add their bills to the court fees
  • if you need to ask the court to make a ruling about finances (ancillary relief), you will have further court fees to pay, plus additional legal costs for your solicitor/barrister.

The biggest driver of cost in divorces is when two parties are fighting about how to divide assets and responsibilities.

If you and your former partner don’t agree on finances, issues with children, debts – you will likely need to hire solicitors to help you sort them out.

Depending on the complexity of the situation, sometimes people also need the help of barristers and/or accountants.

None of these professional come cheap – and the bills can very quickly add up.

Divorce solicitors in Northern Ireland are usually happy to give you an up-front quote/estimate for how much your divorce will cost before starting work.

(Remember - these are only the fees that you have to pay to get your divorce processed and made legal - any payments that you might have to make to your ex-spouse as part of a financial settlement are completely separate!)

If you want to keep costs down, do your best to find agreement with your partner on as many issues as possible.

This is easier said than done, but if you can achieve it, you will save you a lot of money.

So to answer the question – how much does a divorce cost in Northern Ireland – the minimum you will need to pay will be in the region of £622. So if you could arrange to split that with your partner, it would be just over £300 each.

If you engage solicitors, the average cost of a divorce in Northern Ireland is more likely to be in the region of £2,000 (or £1,000 each).

So the bad news is that getting a divorce in Northern Ireland is not exactly cheap.  But the good news is that you can still do things to keep the cost as low as possible, while still engaging the services of a divorce solicitor (which we recommend you do).

Try to keep relations with your ex as professional and pragmatic as possible, avoid unnecessary conflict, and you should be able to make sure that your divorce costs are kept to a reasonable level.

The above article is part of our guide on how to get a divorce in Northern Ireland.

If you are thinking about getting a divorce, you should get in touch with a Northern Ireland specialist divorce solicitor who will be able to provide advice tailored to your own personal circumstances.

If you have any questions, you are very welcome to get in touch.

All the best,

The Team @ Lightlaw
Every effort is made to keep this guide up to date. Although it is not to be regarded as legal advice, we strive to make sure the information is helpful, accurate and practical. If you are a Northern Ireland divorce solicitor and have spotted an inaccuracy, you can submit a suggested change.
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