Divorce Decree with gavel and Attorney nameplateDuring any legal proceedings, even those that do not involve a trip to court, there can be a lot of paperwork. Divorce is no exception and there are many different types of paperwork that may need to be filed. However, there are some documents that are common to all divorces and they form the basic framework.

Engaging a divorce solicitor in London, like Saracens Solicitors, can help someone to work their way through the various stages and ensure that no mistakes are made. Any errors or omissions can affect the outcome of any court proceedings.


A D8 is the first step towards obtaining a divorce. The petitioner needs to fill in all the details including their name and other biographical details, as well as those of their partner. If they are citing adultery as the facts for divorce, they may also include the name and address of the person they are claiming their partner had intercourse with. This means that this person will receive a copy of the divorce petition.

The government has produced guidelines to help people fill in the D8 form. It needs to be submitted to a divorce centre along with the original marriage certificate and a fee of £550.

As this is a legal document that can be used in court, it is advisable for the petitioner to seek legal advice from a divorce solicitor, in London or elsewhere, if there is any reason to suspect that the divorce will not be simple or if there are assets or children involved.

Acknowledgement of service

Once the divorce has been received, a copy will be sent to the respondent. They are asked to review the documentation and return an Acknowledgement of Service within 7 working days. It can be helpful, depending on the relationship between the two parties, for the respondent to be aware that they will receive the paperwork. If there is regular communication, it may also be beneficial for them to see the divorce petition before it is submitted.

At this stage, the respondent may take advice from a divorce solicitor in London and might choose to file their own D8. This is not necessary but, if they feel like they have different grounds for divorce, they may be advised to do so.