How To Apply For Divorce In India – Step By Step Guide

There was a time when very few Indian couples would file for a divorce because our culture and society compelled couples to live together despite their differences. However times have changed and now both men and women feel opting out of marriage as the easiest way to get out of an unsatisfactory relationship. In this article I will tell you how to file or apply for divorce in India.

When filing for divorce by mutual consent, any one of the two needs to initiate the process by filing a petition. This application should then be supported by affidavits by both. This is known as the First Motion Petition and this would contain joint statement provided by both the partners. They must agree in front of the district court that they wish to live separately due to their irreconcilable differences.


After the first application, both the parties need to wait for six months and then again file the Second Motion Petition for divorce by mutual consent. This gap of 6 months is given to the estranged couples to reconsider their decision and resolve their issues if possible.

After six months, both the husband and wife are required to appear before the court and give their statements. If the judge is satisfied that both the parties want a mutual divorce by consent and all the requirements have been met then the couple would be granted a divorce.

There are a few important issues that will be considered before granting the divorce. In case the couple has a child from their marriage – who will have the custody of the child. The alimony to be given to the wife also needs to be considered. These issues need to be worked out with mutual consent between the two parties.

The above case is the ideal scenario where a couple agrees and gets a divorce by mutual consent however such as happy ending to a bitter relationship is very rare. In most cases, people would contest with the other for their rights. This is known as the contested divorce. In this case, one party applied for divorce and the other party contests it based on the various grounds such as domestic violence, desertion, impotency, renouncing the world, unsoundness of mind and so on. The party which files for the divorce needs to provide supporting documents and evidences to build a strong case.

Hire a good lawyer

You need to hire an experienced civil layer who can help you with applying for divorce and getting your rights. You need to make sure that you hire an efficient lawyer who is capable of getting you justice while taking you through the complex legal system in India. When hiring a lawyer to apply for divorce in India, you must ensure that he has enough experience in divorce cases.

After you have clearly discussed with your lawyer the grounds on which you are seeking divorce, you can go ahead and formally draft a copy to be submitted in the court. As the petitioner, you would need to provide the following documents to your lawyer:

  • Income tax statements for past 2-3 years
  • Profession of the petitioner and the current remuneration
  • Details about the family background
  • Complete information about the properties and other assets of the petitioner

When applying for divorce, the petitioner should be as frank about his/ her relationship as possible and let the lawyer know all the important details that can help make the case strong.

The time required for obtaining divorce may slightly from case to case. In most cases, the contested divorce proceedings will take about 18 to 24 months; while the mutual consent divorce may take four weeks to seven months.

We hope the above information helps you with – how to apply for divorce in India.

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