Divorce is often thought to be a simple process and while the vast majority of cases are indeed simple and uncontested, a minority can turn into a battle to prove the necessary grounds.
The Tini Owens case is one high profile example of just how difficult it can be to come up with sufficient grounds for divorce when the reasons are ruled as not falling into the main criteria used by judges to grant a divorce.
The criteria on which divorce cases are judged in the UK are as follows:
- Unreasonable behaviour
- 2 years separation with consent
- 5 years separation (no consent required)
As with any legal case, the grounds for divorce must be proven and while it may be straightforward to prove most of the above facts, unreasonable behaviour often relies on as many as six allegations if facts are not regarded as particularly serious such as those involving violence.
Despite the Tini Owens case being referred to the supreme court, her case was ultimately lost on not being able to provide sufficient grounds for divorce.
Under current laws it is simply not enough to be locked in an unhappy marriage and there are calls to make divorce easier for those trapped in this kind of situation.