The stress of applying for a divorce could be eased thanks to a new online service that removes the need for paper forms.

The online service offers prompts and guidance to assist people in completing their application, and uses clear, non-technical language.

The whole process can be completed online, including payment and uploading supporting evidence.

More than 1,000 petitions were issued through the new system during the testing phase – with 91 per cent of people saying they were satisfied with the service. The new, refined and easy to use version was rolled out across England and Wales from May 1st.

Court staff currently spend 13,000 hours dealing with complex paper divorce forms, but this simpler and less technical online service has already contributed to a 95 per cent drop in the number of applications being returned because of mistakes compared with paper forms.

Only 0.6 per cent of forms have been rejected since January.

Justice Minister Lucy Frazer said: “Allowing divorce applications to be made online will help make sure we are best supporting people going through an often difficult and painful time.

“More people will have the option of moving from paper-based processes to online systems which will cut waste, speed up services which can be safely expedited, and otherwise better fit with modern day life.”

The changes are part of a £1 billion programme to transform the court system – making it quicker, more accessible and easier to use for all.