Below are readers' questions about 'Divorce–Civil', which we have chosen to answer. More detailed information on 'Divorce–Civil' can be found on our main website, Family Law in Israel.
In Israel, by filing for dissolution of marriage ( a civil process covering couples of mixed religious affiliation like yours) at the family court in Israel, serving your last joint place of residence. If your wife is willing to co-operate from the start, you can make a joint application straightaway. If not, you can file for divorce, and she can consent later. Mutual consent is sufficient grounds to end your marriage, under Israeli civil divorce law. You do not meet the residency requirements for filing for dissolution of marriage in California – residence for six months prior to filing.
Yes! Our legal practice can draft a dissolution of marriage (civil divorce) agreement in English and Hebrew and represent you in proceedings to end your marriage at the family court, should you provide us with a properly authorised power of attorney. Under Israeli law mutual consent is sufficient grounds for ending a marriage between couples of different religious affiliations.
Yes - by the Dissolution of Marriage process.
Yes! For example, a gay marriage between two Israeli men, who had married in a single sex marriage in Canada, was ended by Tel Aviv Family Court in a dissolution of gay marriage judgment in November 2012.
Currently, legally valid gay marriage cannot be performed in Israel, but Israel will register gay marriages performed overseas, at the Ministry of Interior, recognizing it administratively.
No! Under the residency requirements at least one of you must be resident in Washington State. You need to go through the dissolution of marriage process in Israel . Once you are divorced you can get the divorce judgment recognized in the States.
Yes, since new legislation came into force in September 2010, a civil union, or "spousal covenant" is possible under Israeli law, but in a very restricted form, under specific circumstances, to residents or citizens of Israel only, where neither of them has a registered religion. The Act on Spousal Covenant For Persons Having No Religious Affiliation (2010) allows such covenants to be listed on a register.
Civil marriage still does not exist within Israel, under Israeli law. Civil marriage outside of Israel is still the only option for couples of different religions or where one side has a registered religion.
You must file an application to dissolve your marriage at the family court. The vice-president will decide which court has jurisdiction to end your union – most probably the family court, after consulting and obtaining the legal opinions of any relevant religious courts involved (e. g. rabbinical court for you, and possibly another religious court, depending on your whether spouse's religious affiliation is recognised in Israel).
Yes! As you are both Jews living in Israel you will need to divorce through the rabbinical court system, in Israel, even though you married in a civil ceremony overseas. This is because under Israeli law , the rabbinical courts have exclusive jurisdiction over divorce between Jews living in Israel, or with a connection to it, irrespective of where in the world they married, and in what ceremony. Mutual consent is sufficient grounds for divorce under Jewish law.
You need a special get to erase all doubts of marriage,even though Jewish law does not recognize civil marriage.
Once you get a divorce judgment, and the "get" ceremony is completed, you can start the process of getting the divorce recognized in Canada. You need both a religious divorce in Israel and a civil divorce based upon its recognition, in Canada, to be eligible to remarry legally.
If you don't get divorced in both countries you will still have a "limping" marriage, and if one of you remarries, you run the risk of being prosecuted in Israel for the criminal offence of bigamy, which is prohibited.
By filing for dissolution of marriage (the process covering marriages between spouses of different religious affiliation) at the family court in Israel, and requesting permission to serve the documents overseas.
Under Israeli law, mutual consent is sufficient grounds for dissolution of marriage, between ‘mixed’ religious couples, so if you husband agrees, instead of opposing the process, and co-operates, the process will be much simpler and faster and a civil divorce judgment can be given by mutual consent. If he does not consent and co-operate , then the civil divorce proceedings will continue to take place in Israel, but you will have to prove that you are entitled to divorce under Washington divorce laws i. e. that there is an irretrievable breakdown of marriage, to be entitled to a dissolution of marriage ruling in Israel.
You will need to start the civil process of dissolution of marriage at the family court serving the area where you live, or last lived together, if you have separated. The opinions of any religious courts involved,will be requested, if necessary. The Vice President of the family court will decide which court has jurisdiction to hear the matter. You will have to provide information, and even proof, concerning your religious backgrounds, going back to your grandparents on both sides . The family court will normally have jurisdiction, where the parties come from a ‘mixed religious marriage’.
Yes ! As part of the dissolution of marriage process you can apply to serve her with all documents in the proceedings at her relative's address in the Ukraine. If she co-operates, the process is simplified, as mutual consent is sufficient grounds for ending a 'mixed' religious marriage. If she does not consent, you will have to prove grounds, according to the divorce laws wherever you got married abroad.
Yes! You can open and manage dissolution of marriage proceedings against your Israeli wife in Israel, while you remain in Australia. If she co-operates, and is willing to divorce, then you can get a divorce judgment without even having a court hearing, based on mutual consent. Our office is experienced at handling such cases.
No! As Israeli citizens and residents you are subject to Israeli law which adopts Jewish religious law. You need a 'doubting get' or religious divorce from the Rabbinical Court in Israel,even though you married in a civil ceremony abroad, in order to be regarded as 'free' to marry again, in Israel, or abroad.
You can get a civil divorce (known as 'Dissolution of Marriage') in Israel, without travelling abroad. If your husband agrees to divorce, the process is straightforward, but if he objects, you will have to prove grounds for divorce, under the laws of the country where you married.
Yes, two Jewish gays who married overseas, in a country where single-sex marriage is possible can get a civil divorce in Israel. In November 2012 Tel Aviv Family Court gave a dissolution of marriage judgment in relation to two men who had married in a single sex marriage in Canada, stressing that the rabbinical court had no jurisdiction over their marriage.
Orthodox Jewish law does not recognize gay marriage in the first place, so that it is void ab initio, the court ruled. Under Israeli legislation, the Courts’ Act of 1984, a civil court may fill a void left by a religious court, which has no jurisdiction over a matter, and exercise its “inherent jurisdiction” and grant a declaratory judgment, order, or any step required, so that justice is done, the judgment stressed.
By consenting to end the marriage, in writing,and, signing, a professionally drafted agreement concerning the dissolution of your marriage,which can be authorised by the family court in Israel,after your husband has also signed it. You also need to sign a special, appropriate power of attorney allowing a lawyer to represent you,in Israel, during the proceedings,should you wish to return abroad meanwhile. You may also have to co-operate regarding the provision of information concerning your religious affiliation,as a technicality,depending on whether you belong to a religion recognised in Israel.
Mutual consent is sufficient grounds under Israeli law for ending a marriage between people of different religious affiliations,even if they married abroad,and one of them is a non-Israeli. Under Cypriot law foreigners who married in Cyprus must live over there for three months for a court in Cyprus to have jurisdiciton to deal with ending their marriage. Thus it is far easier and convenient for you to divorce via the Israeli legal system,but it is advisable to be represented by a specialist lawyer/attorney,in Israel, experienced at handling such cases.
You can get a civil divorce in Israel, without any need to travel to Cyprus. Under the dissolution of marriage process governing mixed religious marriages under Israeli law mutual consent is sufficient grounds to end your marriage. If your wife does not agree to divorce, you will have to prove that you are entitled to dissolve your marriage, under Cypriot divorce law, but you can still do this in Israel, by presenting the legal opinion of an 'expert' on this.
File a joint application for the dissolution of marriage at the family court in Israel. The family court has jurisdiction over "mixed" marriages like yours between spouses with different religious affiliations .
You need to show express written consent to end the marriage, and preferably submit a dissolution of marriage agreement signed and authorized in your respective countries. Mutual consent alone is sufficient grounds for dissolution of marriage in this situation.
It is recommended that they get a properly drafted 'divorce agreement' in its wider sense, that deals with property and the children (custody, maintenance and visitation), and get those aspects of it authorized at the family court, to give them binding legal value. Afterwards, they should present the same agreement to the rabbinical court, and request that they authorize the section dealing with divorce, give a divorce judgment, and arrange a date for the actual 'get' ceremony.
In Israel - by the civil process of dissolution of marriage. Where non-Cypriot nationals get married in a civil wedding in Cyprus, but they do not actuallly live there, the family court there will not gain jurisdiction over proceedings to end the marriage as the residency requirements are not met. Accordingly, if one or both of you live in Israel, you can end your marriage in Israel, even though you married in Cyprus, and very quickly, too, if there is mutual consent. Otherwise, if the divorce is contested, you will need to prove grounds under Cypriot divorce law, and provide a legal opinion of an expert on this, within the dissolution of marriage proceedings that take place in Israel.
If they both agree to end their marriage,then Israeli law, as mutual consent is sufficient grounds to dissolve their union, under Israeli law. If one party objects, then the laws of the place where they married apply, and grounds will have to be proved according to the relevant foreign law, even though the proceedings actually take place in Israel.
No! Even though you avoided going through a religious marriage, as you are Jews and residents of Israel, Jewish law applies to you, under Israeli law and the rabbinical court system in Israel will have exclusive jurisdiction over your divorce, no matter where you married, and in what ceremony. Therefore you are bound to go through the rabbinical court in order to divorce. Mutual consent is a ground for divorce under Jewish law, so while you cannot get a civil divorce in Israel, you can divorce in a "civil" manner, and obtain a divorce judgment by mutual consent, without having to prove grounds under Jewish law.
Yes, two Jewish gays who married overseas, in a country where single-sex marriage is possible can get a civil divorce in Israel. In November 2012 Tel Aviv Family Court gave a dissolution of marriage judgment in relation to two men who had married in a single sex marriage in Canada, stressing that the rabbinical court had no jurisdiction over their marriage. Orthodox Jewish law does not recognize gay marriage in the first place, so that it is void ab initio, the court ruled. Under Israeli legislation, the Courts’ Act of 1984, a civil court may fill a void left by a religious court, which has no jurisdiction over a matter, and exercise its “inherent jurisdiction” and grant a declaratory judgment, order, or any step required, so that justice is done, the judgment stressed.
Yes! Where there is mutual consent , a civil marriage entered into overseas, involving an Israeli citizen and a foreign national of a different religion, like yours, can be ended by a process of dissolution of marriage in Israel , even if the non-Israeli spouse is abroad. Clearly, before you separate, it would be easier to organise the appropriate written consent and power of attorney from your wife, authorised in the correct manner overseas, to enable the legal process to be managed correctly from Israel. If handled correctly, from the procedural viewpoint, the process can even be started off in Israel, by counsel you apppoint , while you are still in India. It may be possible for you to remain overseas, if you would prefer to do so, and for the civil divorce process to be managed and even completed in Israel without you having to return.
You can then deal with recognition of the Israeli divorce judgment abroad to complete the cycle.
Yes - if the defendant actually consents to divorce, during the preliminary hearing at the Israeli family court. Mutual consent is sufficient grounds for ending a civil marriage performed abroad between couples of different religions - and saves costs by making it unnecessary to prove that grounds exist for divorce, under the applicable foreign law,relating to marriage and divorce. Thus the cost of providing an expert opinion on foreign law can be saved.
This happened in March 2016, at Haifa Family Court,Israel, when the non-Jewish mother (represented by our law practice) filed for dissolution of her marriage to her Jewish husband. The parties had married under the laws of Washington, USA, before relocating to Israel but had lived separately in Israel for some time. The husband was represented, had not filed a defence, but consented to divorce at the hearing, and therefore the wife did not have to go to the expense of paying for an expert legal opinion on foreign law, to prove that under Washington law, she had grounds for divorce. The court authorized the consensus reached at the preliminary hearing, and shortly afterwards, gave a formal judgment dissolving the marriage.
Yes! , it is possible to start dissolution of marriage proceedings in Israel, through a lawyer specialising in the field,and even obtain a divorce judgment, that can be recognised in Bulgaria, while you are both overseas,most probably without the need for either of you to come to Israel.
Mutual consent is sufficient grounds for ending your marriage,under Israeli law, and a joint application to do so can be filed, in Israel, via an experienced lawyer in Israel, specialising in mixed- marriage divorces. All the relevant documentation can be signed abroad, either at your nearest Israeli Consulates, or before a notary, with the appropriate authorisation , including special powers of attorney and a professionally-drafted dissolution of marriage agreement. A bureaucratic legal procedure is involved regarding your religious affiliation, but the family court in Israel has jurisdiction to dissolve a civil marriage between an Israeli citizen and a foreigner , of different religious affiliations, that took place abroad.
Our law practice has successfully obtained divorces for many couples in similar situations , over the years.
A family (civil ) court in Israel, as what counts is your religious affiliation at the time when you got married. You were Christian then, and not Moslem. The Sha'ari (Moslem religious) Court only has jurisdiction over divorce where both parties were Moslems at the time they married. Had you converted to Islam before you married, you could not apply to end your marriage through the civil divorce process, and the Israeli civil court system, but would be bound to Islamic religious law, and the Sha'ari (Moslem Religious) Court.
No ! Even though you did not get married according to Jewish law, paradoxically you must end your marriage according to it, and exclusive jurisdiction to end your marriage lies with the rabbinical court here, where you need to get a special kind of religious divorce known as a 'Get mSefek' ('doubting divorce').
Yes, you can still get a dissolution of marriage judgment , from an Israeli family court, even if your husband does not consent to divorce, but you must prove grounds for divorce under Californian law (“irreconcilable differences”) via a legal opinion as part of the proceedings you file in Israel.