Until 2005, the laws in Spain – just like the laws currently in the UK – made it necessary for a petitioning spouse to give appropriate reasons for a divorce in Spain. in 2005 new legislation (Ley 15/2005) was enacted which completely overhauled the entire area of family law and in the process did away with many of the old requirements.
Accordingly it is no longer necessary to rely on the typical reasons for a divorce used pre-2005 such as alcoholism, infidelity, cessation of matrimonial cohabiting and drug addiction. Now it is merely necessary that three months have passed since the marriage took place in order for a divorce to be sought be either or both of the spouses. No grounds need to be alleged other than a desire by one or both of the spouses to part their ways.
The rationale behind the changes was to streamline the process and bring a level of modernity to the underlying basis of the law in this area. So, either or both of the spouses may make an application for a divorce and, should there be agreement as to the major terms of the divorce then the spouses may take advantage of a new process introduced by the legislation known as ‘Express Divorce’.
Express divorce allows for a simpler, faster and less expensive process for a couple to divorce. A cornerstone of the Express Divorce procedure is that there be an agreed understanding between the spouses both as to the desire to end the marriage and the form that this should take. This takes the form of a written and signed agreement or ‘Convenio’.
Once these issues have been agreed then it is simply a matter of contracting a lawyer who will draw-up the agreement formally in the form of a ‘Convenio’ and have this submitted to the relevant court with the necessary additional documentation required.