Get divorced in just 6 months, England to amend archaic matrimonial laws
Posted on April 9th, 2019

Dr Sarath Obeysekera

Written by Staff Writer    09 Apr, 2019 | 11:02 AM

Colombo (News1st) : England and Wales have begun the process overhauling their divorce laws which are nearly 50 years old.The new amendments to the legislation are expected to allow couples to split faster and with less acrimony. The new rules will set a timeline of 6 months for the entire process (from petition to decree absolute), following the 6 month period the applicants will be required to confirm whether they wish to proceed with the divorce.

Amendments have been suggested to the existing laws following a 12-week public consultation which had shown widespread support for no-fault divorce.According to foreign media reports British Justice Secretary David Gauke has described the new changes as and elimination of the current blame game.” The existing matrimonial causes act of 1973 requires an applicant to prove that their partner is at fault for adultery, desertion or unreasonable behaviour for a divorce to be settled, else both parties can agree they could be allowed to part after two years.

The changes are also expected to put an end to dispute where one partner refuses to grant a divorce, an issue which came into the spotlight when Supreme Court of the UK ruled that a 68-year-old Worcestershire woman must remain married to her husband of 40 years till 2020. The petitioner had filed for divorce stating that she was unhappy, but the husband rejected the divorce request which eventually led to the SC rejecting her appeal.

Recently I was listening to a sermon of a young monk who has travelled a lot .He was talking about the lack of marale values among Sri Lankan youngsters .Among Muslims prophet has advised that simple statement in front of a priest is good enough to divorce one’s wife .But among other religions it is not that easy.Judges in Sri Lanka try to uphold moral values and try to discourage divorces .The monk was telling the almost 60 % of newly weds tend to get divorced !One new items quoted that there ae 400 divorces per day in Sri Lanka !

We need to amend our laws like in some Equropean countries that the couple should live together for at least 2 years before seeking a divorce only on following grounds

  • communication problems
  • loss of connection
  • infidelity/trust issues
  • physical or emotional abuse
  • alcohol and drug addiction
  • financial problems
  • work/time pressures
  • family interference
  • physical health or mental health issues

After two years of a marriage the couple should be allowed to divorce OR the public should turn blind eye to the concept of living together for some time to check their compatibility .

Dr Sarath Obeysekera

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