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Changed Your Mind About a Divorce?

By: Lorna Elliott LLB (hons), Barrister - Updated: 23 Jul 2017 |
 
Changed Your Mind About A Divorce?

If you and your ex have decided to make a go of it again you are not the only ones! A considerable number of people each year separate or take time away from their partners without actually going through the divorce process. The law also recognizes that couples need a ‘cooling off’ period, in case they wish to change their minds. This is why the divorce process takes several months to complete, even for uncontested and simple divorces.

How to Stop Your Divorce

If you and your spouse decide to make a go of things, you can stop your divorce from being finalised. It is only possible to apply for a decree absolute six weeks and one day after you receive your decree nisi. If you have already had a decree nisi, it is only the petitioner who can then apply for the decree absolute after this period. If as the petitioner you do not do this, there will be no divorce but you should write to the court (or your solicitor) dealing with your divorce and inform them that you are withdrawing from the divorce proceedings.

If the petitioner has not applied, the respondent can apply for a decree absolute three months, six weeks and one day after the grant of the decree nisi. If the respondent has been the one to apply for the decree absolute they should write to the court or to their solicitor to have the proceedings stopped.

When is it too Late to Stop the Divorce?

You can stop your divorce proceedings any time up until the grant of the decree absolute. Once your decree absolute has been granted, there is no going back. It is not possible to ‘cancel’ a decree absolute as by law you have then completed the divorce proceedings and are no longer married to one another. If you and your spouse have changed your mind about divorcing, it is imperative that you let your solicitor know as soon as possible to prevent your divorce being finalised. If your decree absolute has already been granted, you are then free to re-marry your spouse (or anyone else) if you wish to.

It is often the case that neither party applies for the decree absolute as soon as they are legally able to (i.e. six weeks or four and a half months after the grant of the decree nisi). This is because it is advisable to hold off on applying for the decree absolute until any financial disputes between you and your spouse (or your lawyers) have been rectified.

Can I Re-Start the Divorce Proceedings Later On?

If you and your spouse change your minds again, you will have to commence proceedings again.

What if I Want to Defend My Divorce?

This is a different situation entirely. If you decide that you do not want to divorce your spouse, but they do want to proceed with the divorce, you can contest the divorce. It is worth noting however that if one person wants to contest the divorce, the legal bills can become very expensive. In short, the more issues that one party contests the more the lawyers earn.

In the first instance your respective solicitors will try to ensure that the issues that are contested can be mediated and settled without a court hearing. If this is not possible, the court then decides what each party should be entitled to. This could include access to the children, financial payments, debt apportionment and division of assets.

Although contesting a divorce means that the legal process takes longer, it is worth remembering that one party can file for divorce without the other’s consent being required if you and your spouse have been separated for a period of five years. If one person wants to divorce and has grounds for doing so, then they’ll be able to divorce you.

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Two years ago I started the process where my husband sign the divorce I bought an index number. After papers got notarize Idid not turn in the papers due to us trying again but now I know I need the divorce.Do I need to start all over or can I turn in the documents I do have already
Natta - 23-Jul-17 @ 11:59 AM
@Eltommo - just reading your message while looking for information for myself. First of all you have to 'respect' your ex's wishes. Your ex has applied for divorce over domestic violence, you say you've been controlling, your ex says she feels the need to have to 'escape' and you still want to keep the family together and seek help for 'her'. If you admit to being controlling, give her some space and respect her wishes. That way you may gain the result you want. Only when someone tries to imprison, does someone feel the need to escape. Give her freedom, let go and try a different less manipulative, more respectful listening approach and you may then find she is more accommodating and more inclined not to feel the need to run. Only then you may be able to build bridges to a more understanding relationship between her and your kids. Push and she'll back off, relax and there's a chance she'll come forward. It's your only hope.
Soph72 - 20-Jun-17 @ 9:58 AM
My wife has applied for a divorce siting domestic violence. However whilst I agree that my behaviour was unacceptable she also committed physical and verbal abuse to me, she also had a sexting affair. My behaviour is down to trust issues and became controlling. We have been through a lot together and actually get on 99% of the time and have a loving relationship. We both suffered depression, I am ok but she is still suffering on anti depressants and had been drinking heavily and upsetting the children. I feel I am about two lose everything but my only wish is to keep the family together and seek help for her. She had moved 6 hours away making it virtually impossible to see my children. Can I do anything? She says that she needs space but has already served a divorce motivationand issued a court order.
Eltommo - 16-Jun-17 @ 9:49 PM
Hello, I started divorce proceedings but couldnt find him...so no papers were signed and gave up I now want to re-marry and am desperate.to re start the petition.We have been seperated for well over 10years and the petition is also over 10 yrs can this be re started?And if so how can i find the petition number?
Vicks - 11-Jun-17 @ 11:52 PM
I have a Decree Nisi granted, I'm not the petitioner I could stop the divorce because I have suffered -victim for the purpose of getting papers -the right to protection from intimidation and harassment -right to restitution from the offender -the right to apply for crime victim compensation
GB123 - 6-Jun-17 @ 12:58 PM
I started an amicable divorce two and a halfyears ago.After the decree nIsi was granted , we changed our minds . We now want to divorce .. Can we re activate the decree nisi to decree absolute. is it held on file ?thank you
dizzy - 4-May-17 @ 2:00 PM
I started divorce proceedings in October 15 and got to decree nisi but changed my mind but now realised I have made a mistake and would like to Pursue the divorce.Do I need to start the proceedings again
Shoes - 31-Dec-16 @ 12:09 PM
How do we word a letter to the courts to stop the divorce proceedings and/or we just complete a D11 form...if the D11 form is the way forward, how do I complete the form? Many thanks
GirlFriday - 26-Dec-16 @ 8:02 PM
We too filled in a D11seeking rescindment ofthe decree nisi,absolutely mutual. We paid the lesser fee of £50 At no stage were we obliged to attend the court we were asked on the D 11 could this rescindmentbe done by phone or letter,we replied "yes". At no stage were we told to attend the court. Today we received a letter from the court dismissing our mutual request because we weren't in attendance.!! A phone call to the Court eventually answered offered little help,infact he said"he wasn't legally trained.This family court is awful,what can we do now?
Johno. - 25-Nov-16 @ 1:22 PM
I too have just received nisi. I am the petitioner due to my husband's adultery one off incident. I was all up for divorce as he says he doesn't want me. But it has only been just a year. I feel I need more time we were together for 18 years. I still have those niggling doubts, time is a healer. How do I stop my divorce? Nisi was only granted on 24 October. Do I need to tell my husband I am holding off? If he wants to divorce me does that mean he would have to go down route of unreasonable behaviour. In that case if I don't sign does this too stop the divorce?
Becks - 31-Oct-16 @ 5:25 AM
Hi, I need some help ASAP I have only been married 5 weeks today and already I no ur was a massive mistake I've found out my partner is taking out loans and owing ppl a lot of money I've gave up so much money wise me and my children to be with him!! Can I get an annulment??? What do I have to to make this right? What are my options here
Cheri - 1-Oct-16 @ 6:39 AM
I never cease to be amazed at ALFRED HEALING HOME. After many months of separation from my husband, Dr. Alfred has redeemed my family and my husband and I are back together. Just an email conversation with Dr. Alfred at alfredhealinghome AT gmail DOT com and little money was all it takes to heal my marriage and it is what i will advice anyone out there with marital problems to give a try, believe me is worth trying.
Janet Valentin - 3-Sep-16 @ 8:16 PM
Like SG (29 Jul 16) my wife and I now dont want a divorce. We have sent the UK divorce court a D11 to cancel which we've been told costs £50. Surely the initial £550 cost will then be refunded?
BDA - 31-Aug-16 @ 7:47 PM
I filed for divorce just over a week ago, we have both received the first correspondence of this nothing has been signed and sent back as yet, however I have changed my mind, how do I stop proceedings and will I incur any costs?
SG - 29-Jul-16 @ 1:54 PM
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payospiritsshalospel - 5-May-16 @ 1:09 PM
I am the petitioner and have filed for divorce from husband for adultery (under pressure as he threatening unreasonable behaviour!) which he has agreed to not defend in the acknowledgement of service as he is in a full-time relationship with her now.. I'm quite happy to wait a while before taking to the next step as it suits my circumstances right now (we have children and matrimonial home). Is there a time limit that I have to submit the decree Nisi application forms within? When I do decide to apply I also change my mind now and ask for him to pay costs and originally I was being fair and we agreed to pay from our joint account but the finiancial side is becoming more tricky now.
ConfusedMrs - 17-Apr-16 @ 2:40 PM
PhillipLee - Your Question:
We have had Decree Nisi granted. If I want to withdraw from the divorce proceedings is this only possible if both parties agree, or am I able to do this without her consent ?

Our Response:
Yes, you can individually stop your divorce proceedings any time up until the grant of the decree absolute.
DivorceResource - 22-Mar-16 @ 11:15 AM
We have had Decree Nisi granted. If I want to withdraw from the divorce proceedings is this only possible if both parties agree, or am I able to do this without her consent ?
PhillipLee - 21-Mar-16 @ 1:38 PM
Swanie - Your Question:
My divorce should be final in a few weeks. He didn't contest to anything. Can he contest now?

Our Response:
As specified in the article, a person can stop their divorce proceedings any time up until the grant of the decree absolute. Once your decree absolute has been granted, there is no going back.
DivorceResource - 19-Jan-16 @ 12:44 PM
My divorce should be final in a few weeks. He didn't contest to anything. Can he contest now?
Swanie - 18-Jan-16 @ 4:00 PM
Can you help my husband has filed for divorce which is now at the nisi stage following this his solicitor has sent me a letter saying that the court has made an order that I pay the costs incurred on their clients behalf (my ex husband ) which comes to 1516.44p that I have got to pay any ideas where I stand on paying this ?? Help
Eissac - 10-Dec-15 @ 5:10 PM
prince - Your Question:
I would like to know if it's possible to stop the divorce and how soon can it be done and for how long. We both didn't sign any papers as yet , but we both decide to get the divorce in front the judge. But I have change my mind.

Our Response:
As specified in the article; you can stop your divorce proceedings any time up until the grant of the decree absolute. Once your decree absolute has been granted, there is no going back. It is not possible to ‘cancel’ a decree absolute as by law you have then completed the divorce proceedings and are no longer married to one another. If you and/or your spouse have changed your mind about divorcing, it is imperative that you let your solicitor know as soon as possible to prevent your divorce being finalised.
DivorceResource - 11-Nov-15 @ 11:09 AM
I would like to know if it's possible to stop the divorce and how soon can it be done and for how long. We both didn't sign any papers as yet , but we both decide to get the divorce in front the judge . But I have change my mind .
prince - 10-Nov-15 @ 6:00 AM
misskc - Your Question:
Hello, I signed my husbands petition for divorce as we have been apart 2 years and he wants the divorce now. It was heard in court this morning so I assume the first part is now done. Can I change my mind in terms of consent? If so what are the financial consequences because I know he'll file again for unreasonable behaviour if I withdraw my consent. Thanks you

Our Response:
As specified in the article, you can stop your divorce proceedings any time up until the grant of the decree absolute. However, you would have to speak to your legal representative to see what/if the repercussions may be.
DivorceResource - 28-Oct-15 @ 12:46 PM
Hello, I signed my husbands petition for divorce as we have been apart 2 years and he wants the divorce now. It was heard in court this morning so I assume the first part is now done. Can I change my mind in terms of consent? If sowhat are the financial consequences because I know he'll file again for unreasonable behaviour if I withdraw my consent. Thanks you
misskc - 27-Oct-15 @ 12:06 PM
I stupidly got back with my husband after decree nisi and since then marriage has broken down again. Can divorce proceedings after nisi be recalled or do I have to start divorce proceedings again?
Sammy - 6-Oct-15 @ 4:49 PM
I filed for divorce under unreasonable behavior which my husband was it seems very happy to agree to, however I now discover the reason for his behavior was/is adultery.the decree Nisi has been issued but I want it to state the reasons as adultery,I can supply at least one date and venue for his adultery which he has finally admitted to.Should Ihave the nisi revoked or can i just change the wording/reason?
Milli - 5-Oct-15 @ 2:39 PM
Its only been a year since me my husband got married, But since then his family have destroyed our marriage. Now they want him to divorce me. If he's the petitioner and I aviod the petition what would happen? Would I have to pay for "court fees" and how would i know if he is cliaming for the court fees against me? And every time he sends the petition would he need to pay the courts? also if he lies on the petition can I state my side of the story without defending it? Would I then need to pay for court fees.
Riya - 2-Oct-15 @ 1:52 PM
Pj - Your Question:
Hi,my husband has filed for divorce, and l have signed the first bit of the paper work,as l had to with in 2 weeks,otherwise l would have to foot the bill,and l can't get legal aid,so l had no choice,but can l still stop it going ahead even now?,l never wanted to get divorce,l was willing to wait for two yrs,and try and work at are marriage,as l have been married for over 13 yrs,but been together for 19 yrs,OK he did cheat on me,and he wants kids,and l can't,is there any hope left,before this divorce is final, I see speak to him,and he said his new gf has made him do it,so lm so unsure he really wants this.help

Our Response:
As specified in the article, you can stop your divorce proceedings any time up until the grant of the decree absolute. Once your decree absolute has been granted, there is no going back. It is not possible to ‘cancel’ a decree absolute as by law you have then completed the divorce proceedings and are no longer married to one another. If you have changed your mind about divorcing, it is imperative that you let your solicitor know as soon as possible to prevent your divorce being finalised. I can't advise you on whether this is the right decision for you, you will have to come to that decision yourself and ask whether halting the divorce will make a difference, especially if he has moved on and has a new girlfriend. It may be that the break will allow you to move on with your own life and give yourself the chance to meet someone new. It sounds to me as though he wants the best of both worlds, to have his girlfriend, but to also have you waiting in the wings should anything with her go wrong.
DivorceResource - 12-Aug-15 @ 10:58 AM
Hi,my husband has filed for divorce, and l have signed the first bit of the paper work,as l had to with in 2 weeks,otherwise l would have to foot the bill,and l can't get legal aid,so l had no choice,but can l still stop it going ahead even now?,l never wanted to get divorce,l was willing to wait for two yrs,and try and work at are marriage,as l have been married for over 13 yrs,but been together for 19 yrs,OK he did cheat on me,and he wants kids,and l can't,is there any hope left,before this divorce is final, I see speak to him,and he said his new gf has made him do it,so lm so unsure he really wants this.help
Pj - 9-Aug-15 @ 9:48 PM
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