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Law School Exeter University Rennes Drive Exeter EX4 4RJ
A majority of divorce petitions in England and Wales still rely on allegations of fault, mainly behaviour and adultery. Research in the 1970s and 1980s suggested that the use of fault had the potential to cause or exacerbate hostility between the parties, whilst not saving marriages. Meanwhile, to save judicial time, the 98% of petitions that are undefended are now scrutinised by legal advisers rather than judges. It was not clear how this was operating in practice, but there appeared to be an increasing gap between the potentially painful requirement on parties to produce evidence of fault and the reality of rather limited inquiries by the court. The President of the Family Division, Baroness Hale and Resolution, amongst other, have called recently for divorce law reform. There was therefore a pressing need for robust research on how the current law on divorce and civil partnership dissolution was working, hence the Finding Fault study... The aim of the research was to explore how..