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Divorce 101: Grounds For Divorce - Scotland (#6)

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No. 6 - Grounds For Divorce (Scotland)

In Scotland, there are two grounds for divorce: irretrievable breakdown of marriage and transsexual gender recognition

Irretrievable breakdown of marriage

The first ground can be proved in one of four ways:

  • Adultery: This means your spouse has had full sexual intercourse with a person of the opposite sex.  You cannot use this ground if the respondent has had a sexual relationship short of intercourse, or if they have had a sexual relationship with a person of the same sex.  If this is the case, then you must rely on the ground of unreasonable behaviour (see below).  Also, if you 'condoned' or 'connived at' your spouse's adultery, you cannot rely on this reason.  Condonation means you forgave your spouse by resuming married life after you knew about the adultery.  Connivance means encouraging the adultery (e.g., suggesting you both attend a 'swingers' party).
  • Unreasonable behaviour: This means your spouse has behaved in such a way that you cannot reasonably be expected to live with him/her.  It can include persistent violence, insults, coldness, disgusting personal hygiene, inadequate sex - and more besides.

  • One year non-cohabitation where both spouses consent to divorce: Non-cohabitation means living separate lives and not living together as a normal married couple would.

  • Two years non-cohabitation where there is no mutual consent to the divorce: This means that one party does not want to get divorced.

Transsexual gender recognition

To satisfy the second ground, you must be a transsexual who has an interim gender recognition certificate.  You can get an interim gender recognition certificate by applying to the .

** Legal information & advice **

You can obtain further information about divorce on .

Depending on your circumstances, however, you may want to speak with a .  You can be in your area for free via solicitor matching services, which can also help you to understand the best course of action and whether you are ready to hire a solicitor.

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