How Long After Mediation is Divorce Final in the UK?

When going through a divorce, the process can be lengthy and emotionally draining. Mediation offers a way to resolve disputes amicably, saving time and reducing stress. But how long after mediation is a divorce final in the UK? This blog will guide you through the timeline, the role of mediation, and what to expect in mediation services in Derby, Coventry, Birmingham, Leicester, Tamworth, and Nottingham.

What is Family Mediation?

Family mediation is a process where a neutral third party helps separating couples reach agreements on various issues. This can include child arrangement orders, financial and property issues. Mediation services are designed to be less adversarial than going to court, aiming to foster cooperation and mutual agreement.

The Role of Mediation in Divorce

Mediation plays a crucial role in divorce by helping couples agree on key issues without resorting to litigation. This can make the divorce process quicker and less contentious. It’s important to note that mediation is not legally binding, but the agreements reached can be made so through a consent order.

How Mediation Works

  1. Initial Contact and MIAM: The process begins with a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM). This initial meeting assesses whether mediation is suitable for your situation.
  2. Mediation Sessions: If both parties agree to proceed, several mediation sessions will be scheduled. These sessions focus on resolving specific disputes, such as child arrangements or financial settlements.
  3. Reaching an Agreement: Once an agreement is reached, the mediator drafts a document outlining the terms. This can be turned into a legally binding consent order by applying to the court.

Timeline for Finalising a Divorce

Step-by-Step Process

  1. Filing for Divorce: The divorce process officially starts when one party files a divorce petition with the court. This can be done before, during, or after mediation.
  2. Conditional order (formerly know as a Decree Nisi): Once the court approves the petition, a Conditional Order (formerly known as a Decree Nisi is issued). This is a certificate from the court indicating that the court sees no reason why the divorce cannot proceed.
  3. Mediation and Consent Order: During this period, mediation can take place to resolve any disputes. The agreements made in mediation can be submitted to the court as a consent order.
  4. Final Order (formerly known as a Decree Absolute): After the Conditional Order, there is a mandatory six-week waiting period before you can apply for the Final Order. This final order officially ends the marriage.

Factors Influencing the Timeline

  • Complexity of Issues: The more complex the issues, the longer mediation may take. Simple cases may require just a few sessions, while more complex ones can take several months.
  • Willingness to Cooperate: The process is faster if both parties are willing to cooperate and compromise.
  • Court Processing Times: The time taken by the court to process applications can vary, affecting the overall timeline.

The Final Steps

The time it takes for a divorce to be final after mediation in the UK can vary. On average, the process can take anywhere from a few months to over a year, depending on the complexity of the issues and the willingness of both parties to cooperate. Mediation can significantly shorten this timeline by resolving disputes amicably and efficiently. For more information on family mediation, child arrangement orders, or if you need professional assistance, you can contact Family Law Mediation at 0116 4422 989.

Contact Us

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Family Law Mediation Leicester (Head Office)

First Floor

60 Charles Street



Opening Times

Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Weekend appointments are available on request

*We can offer a limited number of pre-arranged mediation sessions outside of office hours subject to agreement and availability. All mediation sessions are held either at our offices or remotely via video conferencing software e.g. Zoom.


Family Law Mediation Leicester (Head Office)
First Floor
60 Charles Street
Tel: 01164 422 989


Family Law mediation Nottingham
Castle Cavendish Works
Dorking Road
Tel: 0115 772 0299


Family Law Mediation Derby
38 St Peter's Churchyard
Tel: 01332 492 988

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