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How to Get Divorced in The Netherlands

There are several ways to divorce in The Netherlands. In this article the four main ways to divorce will be explained.

1. Agreement through one attorney at law for both spouses

When both spouses are on good terms and are almost in (full) agreement with each other, they most commonly go to one attorney at law together. They want to have a quick and efficient divorce without any fuss or hassle. The mutual attorney at law is their best option.

The mutual attorney at law will secure their agreements in a divorce agreement and, if the spouses have minor children, a parenting plan. These agreements will be send to a Court. The Court will pronounce the divorce without an oral hearing, usually within a few days.

2. Agreement through mediation

If the spouses are not anywhere near a full agreement, but want to come to a full agreement efficiently, they could go to a mediator. With help of the professional mediator they can talk in a confidential space about what’s most important for them and come to a joint agreement.

When they come to a full agreement, the divorce agreement and parenting plan will also be send to Court for a quick pronunciation of the divorce and endorsement of these documents. The registered mediators of BOS VAN DER BURG are also attorneys at law and in so are able to both mediate between parties and also get their divorced pronounced by a Court.

3. Agreement through one-sided counsel from an attorney at law

The mutual attorney at law and mediator are both impartial. However, sometimes spouses have the need for biased counsel (only). Both spouses can hire their own attorney at law and the attorneys can help the parties to come to a full agreement.

The attorneys consult with each other, with or without parties present, and negotiate on behalf of their own clients. In so, a joint divorce agreement and parenting plan can be made. The attorneys can then send these documents to the Court with a joint petition, after which the divorce can be pronounced quickly.

4. Contradictory procedure at Court

If the spouses are not able to come to a full agreement, if there is no willingness for mediation or if any consultation is avoided by the other spouse, the only option left is to request the divorce unilaterally. All affairs related to the divorce will then be submitted to the Court. The Court can pronounce the divorce and decide on all matters regarding the divorce, like child support and division of assets.

If you have any questions regarding divorces in The Netherlands or any other family law, juvenile law or inheritance law related matters, please feel free to contact our firm.

This article is written by Lennard J.W. Govers LL.M. from Bos Van der Burg: senior family- and juvenile attorney at law, mediator (ADR.MED®) and guardian ad litem.

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Lennard Govers's picture

Lennard’s practice focusses on national and international family and juvenile law.

Lennard also acts as a MfN registered mediator in family law related disputes between individual parties.

Furthermore, Lennard is regularly appointed as guardian ad litem by the Courts of The Hague and Rotterdam.

In his spare time Lennard is a member of Vlietwensen and tries to dispute issues between neighbours in The Hague area as an official neighbourhood mediator.