Supreme Court dismisses appeal ruling against no-fault divorce

Tini Owen’s battle for a divorce from her husband has reached a final conclusion following the Supreme Court’s decision to deny her a divorce based on her husband’s alleged unreasonable behaviour. This means that she will have to remain married (albeit separated) from her husband until 2020 when she can petition for a divorce once again, but this time relying on the fact that they have been separated for 5 years.

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In reaching the decision, the court expressed some concern about how the judge at first instance dealt with this matter, but ultimately confirmed that it is for Parliament, not the courts, to change the law. Until then, unless the parties have been separated for two years and both consent to the divorce, or five years without the other’s consent, there needs to be fault by one party, either through unreasonable behaviour or adultery.

Only time will tell whether the publicity brought by this case will sway Parliament into action or whether the laws first set down in 1973 will continue to prevail.


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