Defended petitions, in other words a situation where there is an argument about whether there should actually be a divorce are very rare indeed.
If there is to be an argument about whether there should actually be a divorce the court will set a date for the parties to some to court: a directions hearing.
At the directions hearing the court will:
- See if the parties can be encouraged to deal with the matter by agreement;
- Set a date for a final hearing; and,
- Perhaps order the parties to file written statements about whether there should be a divorce.
At a final hearing both parties will have the chance to give evidence and the judge will then decide whether the petition is proved. If the petition is proved the judge will grant a decree nisi.