Start a divorce procedure in France

Start a divorce procedure in France

Last update21 mai 2021

What is it?

This sheet concerns the protected person who wishes to divorce in France. There are 4 cases of divorce in France:

  • 1 " non-contentious" divorce, that is to say without going to the judge : this is divorce by mutual consent.
  • 3 " contentious" divorces, that is to say with recourse to the judge : divorce for fault, divorce for permanent alteration of the marital bond or divorce for acceptance of the principle of rupture .

The first essential step is to hire a lawyer who will take all the necessary steps. It is not possible to divorce without a lawyer, even in cases of divorce by mutual consent.

Each spouse should have their own lawyer, including in the case of divorce by mutual consent.

You can find a lawyer by consulting the directory of lawyers in France on the website of the National Bar Council . It is possible to request legal aid.

Please note : Also read on Réfugiés.info: "Access to legal aid"

Be careful, for divorces done abroad : it is only possible to register it with OFPRA after a specific examination by the court (to check its conformity). For this, you must contact:

Mr the Public Prosecutor at the Paris Court of Justice

Court forecourt

Section AC1 - Civil status

75859 PARIS CEDEX 17

Who is it for?

Location

France entière

Age required
More than 18 years
Impossible without
Visa or residence permit
Location

France entière

Age required
More than 18 years
Impossible without
Visa or residence permit

What to do?

1

Divorce by mutual consent

Configurez votre étape
En ligne
En physique
Par téléphone
Par courrier
Autre
Cette étape prend :
Précisez le temps nécessaire pour faire cette étape.
Délai de réponse :
Précisez le délai de réponse légal ou constaté.
Documents justificatifs :

Conditions : if both spouses agree on the divorce and all its effects (division of property, parental authority, alimony, compensatory allowance).

The spouses do not need to go before the judge. The divorce agreement is drawn up by the lawyer and the spouses. It suffices to deposit it with the notary who issues a certificate of deposit.

2

Divorce case for acceptance of the principle of rupture

Configurez votre étape
En ligne
En physique
Par téléphone
Par courrier
Autre
Cette étape prend :
Précisez le temps nécessaire pour faire cette étape.
Délai de réponse :
Précisez le délai de réponse légal ou constaté.
Documents justificatifs :

Conditions : if the spouses agree to divorce, but do not agree on the consequences of the divorce (division of property, parental authority, etc.).

The spouses must go before the judge for family cases, the judicial or local court. The request is made by the lawyer of one of the spouses. The judge can order temporary measures before pronouncing the divorce or reject the request.

Please note : At any time during the procedure the spouses can ask for a divorce by mutual consent if they have reached a common agreement.

3

Divorce for fault

Configurez votre étape
En ligne
En physique
Par téléphone
Par courrier
Autre
Cette étape prend :
Précisez le temps nécessaire pour faire cette étape.
Délai de réponse :
Précisez le délai de réponse légal ou constaté.
Documents justificatifs :

Conditions : a spouse can request a divorce if his/her spouse has committed a serious or renewed violation of the duties and obligations linked to the marriage ( for example: adultery, brutality, insults, abandonment of the marital home, etc. ).

The spouses must go before the judge for family cases, the judicial or local court. The request is made by the lawyer of one of the spouses. The judge can order interim measures before pronouncing the divorce or reject the request.

Please note: At any time during the procedure, the spouses can request a divorce by mutual consent (if they have reached a common agreement) or for permanent alteration of the marital bond or for acceptance of the principle of rupture.

4

Divorce case for permanent alteration of the marital bond

Configurez votre étape
En ligne
En physique
Par téléphone
Par courrier
Autre
Cette étape prend :
Précisez le temps nécessaire pour faire cette étape.
Délai de réponse :
Précisez le délai de réponse légal ou constaté.
Documents justificatifs :

Conditions : when the spouses have been living apart for at least 1 year.

The spouses must go before the judge for family cases, the judicial or local court. The request is made by the lawyer of one of the spouses. The judge can order interim measures before pronouncing the divorce or reject the request.

Please note: At any time during the procedure, the spouses can ask for a divorce by mutual consent (if they have reached a common agreement) or by acceptance of the principle of rupture.

And after?

OFPRA registers the divorce

The lawyer takes care of the necessary procedures, in particular before the judge in the context of a litigation-type divorce.

Once the divorce has been pronounced by the judge or recorded before the notary, it will be registered by OFPRA on production of documents attesting to the final nature of the divorce.

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