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How does divorce work in India, and what are the legal requirements?

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The legal termination of a marriage is known as divorce. Divorce is governed by a number of laws in India, including the Hindu Marriage Act, the Special Marriage Act, and the Indian Divorce Act. Divorce laws differ depending on the religion and personal laws of the persons involved. We will look at how divorce works in India and what the legal prerequisites are in this blog post.

Grounds for Divorce in India

The first step towards obtaining a divorce in India is determining the reasons for divorce. The reasons why one party seeks to end the marriage are referred to as the grounds for divorce. Divorce reasons in India include:

  1. Adultery – If one spouse has a sexual encounter outside of marriage, the other spouse has the right to divorce based on adultery.
  2. Cruelty – If one spouse has subjected the other spouse to physical or emotional cruelty, the other spouse has the right to apply for divorce based on cruelty.
  3. Desertion – If one spouse abandons the other spouse for two years without sufficient cause, the other spouse may apply for divorce on the grounds of desertion.
  4. Conversion – If one spouse converts to a different faith, the other spouse may file for divorce based on the conversion.
  5. Mental Disorder – If one spouse suffers from a mental disorder that has been incurable for two years or more, the other spouse may seek for divorce on the basis of mental disorder.
  6. Irretrievable Marriage Collapse – If the marriage has irretrievably broken down and there is no hope of reconciliation, either party may seek for divorce on the grounds of irretrievable breakdown of marriage.
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Legal Requirements for Divorce in India

Divorce laws in India differ depending on the religion and personal laws of the persons concerned. Nonetheless, in general, the following legal prerequisites must be completed before a divorce can be granted:

  1. Jurisdiction – The divorce petition must be filed in a court with jurisdiction over the subject. This means that either the husband or the wife must have lived in the court’s jurisdiction for at least six months before submitting the petition.
  2. The party seeking divorce must submit a petition with the court. The grounds for divorce must be stated in the petition, which must be signed and certified by the petitioner.
  3. Notification – The party seeking for divorce must serve the other party with notice of the petition. The notification must be served in accordance with the court’s rules.
  4. Reaction – The opposite party may respond to the petition. The response must be submitted within a certain time frame and must specify whether the party accepts or disagrees with the grounds for divorce.
  5. Evidence – The court will take into account the evidence offered by both sides. Documents, witnesses, and testimony may be included.
  6. Decision – If the court determines that the grounds for divorce have been established, it will issue a divorce decree.

Case Study: Anjali and Rahul

Anjali and Rahul tied the knot in 2005. They were both Hindus who married in accordance with the Hindu Marriage Laws. Anjali realised Rahul was having an affair with another lady in 2015. Anjali sought for divorce based on adultery.

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Anjali petitioned the family court in her jurisdiction for divorce. She served Rahul with the petition, and he answered by disputing the claims of infidelity. Anjali produced text messages and images as proof of the affair. After reviewing the material, the court determined that the grounds for divorce had been established. The court issued a divorce order, effectively ending Anjali and Rahul’s marriage.

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