DIY Divorce Case Studies

For a DIY divorce, we would recommend that you and your spouse both want a divorce, and furthermore, that you should be in agreement regarding all matters pertaining to your separation and responsibilities to each other in life after divorce. However, human nature is unpredictable and sometimes things don't go as smoothly as it was hoped.

In this section, we have outlined some case studies as examples of what happens when things don't go according to plan and what measures are taken to overcome the problem. Names and genders have been changed to protect the identity of our customers and any similarity to real persons is purely coincidental.

Case Study 1

Julian had been separated for six years from his wife, Carla, prior to his application for divorce. He and Carla had one daughter who lived with her mother. Neither Julian nor Carla were on speaking terms.

During the initial stages of the proceedings, it became clear that Carla was not willing to cooperate. The divorce documents were served on Carla by registered post. However, on attempted delivery of the documents, they were refused and marked ‘return to sender’. All subsequent correspondence to Carla was similarly returned to the sender.

In a normal situation, Julian would have had to sign an Affidavit of Service, swearing that the documents were posted to Carla and that they were not returned undelivered. Unfortunately, in his situation, that was not the case.

However, Julian was able to show that he attempted to serve the documents numerous times and had An Post delivery records as evidence. He was then able to state in an affidavit that all correspondence sent to Carla's address was returned undelivered. He also stated that he knew for certain that Carla lived at her address, as his daughter, with whom he had an amicable relationship, lived there with Carla.

The courts accepted his affidavit and allowed the case to proceed without any input from Carla. The divorce was granted shortly afterwards without further complication.

Case Study 2

When Rita decided to divorce Mark, she had already been separated from him for nine years. She had had a reasonably civil relationship with him since the separation and had assumed that everything would go smoothly.

After serving the documents on Mark by registered post, Rita expected to receive his consent to the divorce in writing with a few days. After three weeks with no response, Rita served Mark with a warning notice, explaining that if he does not respond, she will apply for the divorce in his absence.

A week later, Rita received a letter from Mark explaining that he has sought advice from the Legal Aid Board and is on a waiting list to see a solicitor, which could take up to six months.

Five months later, Rita recveived Mark's consent from the Legal Aid Board and the divorce proceeded sucussfully shortly afterwards.

Case Study 3