Dissolution, divorce and separation may all sound similar to a person’s ears but they are terms used differently in the legal arena in case of termination of marriage or dissolution of marriage proceedings. Divorce is the legal decree either the husband or wife or both seek and dissolution of marriage is the effect of the said decree.
What the law says:
Broadly, divorce under the Indian law can be divided in three categories.
- Grounds on which either of the parties i.e. the husband or wife may seek divorce.
- Grounds on which only the wife may seek divorce.
- Divorce by mutual consent of both the husband and wife.
In India marriage is considered to be a sacred union in addition to being a legal contract under the law but dissolution of marriage is treated strictly as a legal provision and is a necessary requirement in case the parties want liberation from their legal duties towards each other. A non- mutual divorce is sternly looked at by the law and hence this kind of dissolution can only be demanded under certain conditions but divorce by mutual consent is a new concept that may be filed on a “no-fault” basis by the parties but the court grants a cooling off period for the parties to reflect on the choice.
Facts to know:
- Cruelty is one of the grounds on which either of the parties may seek divorce and this includes mental cruelty.
- No petition of divorce can be presented within one year of a couple’s marriage but a rare exception can be made if the marriage is one with exceptional hardship.
Legal obligations that may arise:
- Maintenance- The courts consider various factors before deciding the amount of maintenance. These include the earning of the husband, his liabilities and child custody.
- Property- This may directly relate to jointly-owned property or assets but may extend to property that may be contested.
- Child custody- The assumption that the mothers generally get the child custody is wrong but the courts rigidly keep in mind the child’s best interests.
Despite the resoluteness of the provisions of laws in relation to the dissolution of marriage the fact remains that the split-up of a couple can be an emotional process and the most favourable way of dealing with the distress of legal proceedings is by appointing an advocate that is experienced with the law and a variety of clientele. I have been guiding a range of clients dealing with a range of matters related to the family law in India and pursue to provide the correct counsel with issues related to dissolution of marriage.