Question 16: In a divorce case that either spouses unilaterally requests a divorce due to the fact that the spouses no longer love each other or the difference in lifestyle and sex of each of the spouses, whether such fact is a proper reason for the Court to accept the case and permit the divorce? If so, does the plaintiff only need to prove that this reason has arisen only once or such a reason must be arisen many times in a reasonable period of time and meet the requirements of the degree of seriousness?

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Divorce is an event in which the husband and wife relation ends under a Court’s legally effective judgement or decision.

If the spouses fail to reach an agreement on divorce, based on the petition of either the husband or the wife, the Court shall conduct the settlement of divorce if it has grounds to believe that: (i) a spouse commits domestic violence; or (ii) seriously infringing upon the rights and obligations of the husband or the wife that results in:

  • Seriously deteriorating the marriage;
  • Making their common life no longer possible; or
  • Making the marriage purposes unachievable.

Under the Law on Marriage and Family, upon the establishment of the marriage relationship between the spouses, they shall have the obligation to love, be faithful to, respect, attend to, care for, and help each other and share family work (“Marriage obligations”). However, the Law has not provided any definition or guidance in a specific manner to be the basis for the assessment on the matter of the marriage obligations. Thus, upon a petition to the Court on the settlement of the case of either the spouses relating to the violation of the marriage conducted by the latter, decision of the Court shall mostly be based on the opinion of the Judge with the appropriate jurisdiction to resolve a particular divorce case.

Thus, in the event that the spouses no longer love each other or there are differences in lifestyle and sex, if either the husband or the wife unilaterally petitions the Court to settle divorce, the Court shall only accept and resolve the case as long as the petitioner fully submitted files, and papers providing evidence of his or her legitimate petition for a legal action under the laws. During the acceptance and resolution of the divorce by the Court, if either the husband or the wife requesting a divorce successfully proves the facts that the spouses are no longer in love or there are differences in lifestyle or sex, results from acts that the latter commits which seriously breaches marriage obligations, while simultaneously, resulting in serious deterioration of the marriage; making their common life no longer possible, or making the marriage purposes unachievable anymore, the Court shall consider whether that is a proper reason for recognising the divorce.

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