COVID-19 response

If you are looking for the latest legal information relating current Coronavirus laws in New Zealand, check out our new section: Coronavirus and the Law.

Communtity Law Manual | Relationships & break-ups | The dissolution order: How it gets made and when it takes effect

Divorce: Getting a “dissolution” order

The dissolution order: How it gets made and when it takes effect

When the parties agree and don’t want a court hearing

Family Proceedings Act 1980, ss 38, 42; Family Court Rules 2002, rules 360–362

If an application for dissolution is made:

  • by the parties jointly, and they consent to the order being made in their absence, or
  • by one party, but the other person consents to the order being made in their absence or does not defend the application,

then the court registrar can make a dissolution order.

A dissolution order made by a registrar does not become final until one month after the order is made. The parties will be sent a copy of the dissolution order as soon as it becomes final.

When the parties agree but do want a court hearing

If the parties want an order immediately (for instance, if one party is due to remarry), or if for any other reason they want the order made by a Family Court judge, then the parties will need to request an undefended hearing in front of a judge. Both parties will have to go to court and appear in front of the judge as a formality only. At the hearing, the judge can make a dissolution order that takes effect immediately.

When the parties disagree and there is a defended court hearing

If, after a defended hearing, a judge decides that the order should be made, then the order will come into effect one month after the hearing date (unless the judge’s decision is appealed).

Next Section | Getting married again
back to top
Page Reader Press Enter to Read Page Content Out LoudPress Enter to Pause or Restart Reading Page Content Out LoudPress Enter to Stop Reading Page Content Out LoudScreen Reader Support