Breaking up is never easy, as Abba sang, but the Ministry of Justice is so pleased with its online divorce pilot that it has launched the scheme nationwide this month.
The latest initiative in the department’s £1bn modernisation programme enables couples splitting up across England and Wales to complete their applications on a website without going to court.
Language has been simplified for the digital form, allowing payments and evidence to be uploaded from home. More than 1,000 petitions were issued through the system during its test phase, with 91% of users, according to the MoJ, reporting that they were satisfied with the service. Sir James Munby, the judge in charge of the high court’s family division, recently described online divorce as a “triumphant success” and “final proof positive that whatever people think, government can do IT [information technology]”.