Civil Partnerships

We are proud to be the first law firm in Wales to become part of Stonewall's Diversity Champion scheme, which aims to promote equality for LGBT staff and clients.

Wendy Hopkins Family Law Practice has a long history of working with the LGBT community to resolve the issues that arise from the end of a relationship.

We were one of the first law firms in Wales to offer a specialist service for clients in civil partnerships and same-sex relationships.

The Civil Partnership Act 2004 came into operation on the 5th December 2005, enabling a same-sex couple to register as civil partners.  Since that time, we have provided expert advice to more civil partners than any other firm in Wales.

When civil partners separate, their finances need to be resolved in the same way as a divorce. We have the expertise and experience to advise and assist our clients to resolve issues and obtain the best possible outcome.

We always encourage former partners to discuss matters directly, or through mediation, with plain, honest advice from us every step of the way prior to any agreement being reached.  If an agreement cannot be reached, then an application through the courts can be made, and we can guide you through the process as thoroughly as possible. However, in our experience, the vast majority of cases settle by agreement without the need for a final hearing.



A civil partnership can only be brought to an end by death, annulment or dissolution. Dissolution is a court based process, and the one ground for dissolution is that the partnership has broken down irretrievably. To prove this, there must be one of four possible facts; the most commonly used are one partner's unreasonable behaviour, or a period of at least two years' separation since the partners last lived together as a couple.

If these conditions have been satisfied, the next step is for one partner to file a Dissolution Petition with the court. This will be served on the other partner, who then has the opportunity to respond.  If the Petition is not contested, the partner who applied for dissolution - known as the Petitioner - then applies for a Conditional Order (the halfway stage) to be pronounced by the court. The court will grant the Conditional Order if satisfied that the Petitioner has proved their case. Six weeks and one day after the Conditional Order has been pronounced, the Petitioner can apply for the Final Order.

If you decide to go ahead with dissolution, our expert solicitors will guide you through every stage of the procedure and make sure you fully understand what is happening. We will only ever proceed at a pace you are comfortable with, and we will never take any action without your prior approval.



To discuss issues concerning your civil partnership, or to book an appointment with one of our dedicated specialist lawyers, please call us on (029) 2034 2233, e-mail, or request a call or e-mail below.  You will not be charged for this enquiry, and there is no obligation to book an appointment.

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