The D-Word i.e. “Divorce” is the most dreaded word in Indian society and has a lot of stigma attached to it not to forget the desolation and misery not just emotionally and mentally but financially as well, that it brings to the parties involved.
Getting a Divorce in India is a long and tedious process whether you are contesting the divorce on the ground of mutual consent or any other grounds. The procedure and grounds for divorce vary from religion to religion and the respective personal laws are applicable accordingly.
Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 is applicable to Hindus, Budhists, Jains and Sikhs. On the other hand Muslims are governed by the Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act, 1939; the Parsi Marriage and Divorce Act, 1936 is applicable to people belonging to the Parsi community and lastly Christians are governed by the Indian Divorce Act, 1869.
For the inter-community marriages, the Special Marriage Act, 1956 comes into play and its provisions are applicable to such marriages.
The kinds of divorce petitions can be mainly classified into 2 –
Firstly, divorce by mutual consent i.e. where both the spouses mutually decide to get a divorce; &
Secondly, divorce without mutual consent i.e. where one partner may file a petition for divorce and the other one is not in favour of it.
Divorce by mutual consent (Under Section 13B of the Hindu Marriage Act) is when both the spouses decide to get a divorce mutually and in an amicable manner. However, the couple should have been living separately for a period of approximately one year before filing the petition. Living separately here means not living as husband and wife, they may be residing under the same roof however they shouldn’t be staying as husband and wife. The period of 1 year is for those who come under the purview of Hindu Marriage Act and Special Marriage Act, for those who are covered by the provisions of the Indian Divorce Act, the period of living separately is of 2 years.
Once the petition has been filed, the Court waits for a period of 6months at least, in case the parties want to withdraw the petition or reconcile. Nowadays, divorce by mutual consent is a more favorable way as it is not as expensive and less time consuming. The essential matters regarding the custody of children, maintenance, rights on movable and immovable properties, etc. are also agreed to mutually by the parties.
Usually the courts take around 6 – 18 months to dispose of such applications and tend to avoid delay and the ‘tarikh pe tarikh’ scenario.
Divorce Without Mutual Consent (Under Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act) :-
In those cases, where either of spouses do not agree to the divorce, there are certain grounds based on which a divorce petition can be made like Cruelty (both mental and physical), adultery, Desertion, Conversion to any other religion, mental Disorder which hinders the ability of the spouse to perform marital obligations, Communicable Disease like HIV/AIDS, syphilis, etc., Renunciation of the World and lastly in case of Presumption of Death for a period of 7 years.
However, the grounds specified above are not applicable to all religions.
How WE Can Help You ?
It is not at all easy to take decision when a relationship breaks down. Our family lawyers assist clients to manage family disputes and offer ways to avoid conflicts . Our Divorce lawyers in chandigarh provide customized legal solutions to assist clients to resolve family law issues . By the very nature of disputes, it might be seen that it cannot take at all times Litigation approach and it is most essential that the disputes are settled through mediation .
Our family & matrimonial practice includes :
• Dowry demand section 498A
• Mutual consent divorce
• Child custody
• Domestic violence & harassment – Cruelty
• Maintenance & Alimony under section 125 of CRPC .
• Partition Actions
• Division of assets and matrimonial settlements
• Love marriage
• Judicial Protection
Requisite documents for filing a divorce petition –
1. Address proof of husband
2. Address proof of wife
3. Marriage certificate
4. Four passport size photographs of marriage of husband and wife
5. Evidence proving spouses are living separately since more than a year
6. Evidence relating to the failed attempts of reconciliation
7. Income tax statements for the last 2-3 years
8. Details of profession and present remuneration
9. Information relating to family background
10. Details of properties and other assets owned by the petitioner