UK  

Lords warn new divorce rules could be 'counterproductive'

"It ​does not make sense that one should be able to walk out of a serious ‘till death us do part’ commitment unless there has been a serious event, such as adultery, to justify doing so.”

He added: “My concern is that if we change the law simply to give one party the power to end the marriage just because he or she wants to, it will have the effect of making divorce very much more accessible."

“The problems raised in the bill as currently drafted are of such a serious nature and so far-reaching that there is a good case for remitting it to a select committee for an inquiry.”

Others were more supportive of the proposed rules.

Lord Marks of Henley-on-Thames said: "I stress that there is no credible evidence either that no-fault divorce undermines or weakens marriage or the respect in which it is held.

"I believe that the evidence supports the contrary view: making divorce honest and improving our support for marriage, family stability and relationship support are, as the noble Baroness, Lady Wyld, and the noble and right reverend Lord, Lord Harries, argued, the best ways of expressing society’s commitment to marriage."

The Divorce Bill will proceed to the committee stage at the House of Lords on March 3 where it will receive a line by line examination.

amy.austin@ft.com

What do you think about the issues raised by this story? Email us on fa.letters@ft.com to let us know.