A court’s ability to accept an application for divorce is called its ‘jurisdiction’. It is a common mistake for separating couples to think that they may only divorce in the country in which they were married, or the country in which they presently live. For English expatriates that we advise, there is often a choice of divorce jurisdiction.
Searching for a divorce jurisdiction that would give the most favourable financial settlement is commonly called ‘forum shopping’. As expatriates in the Middle East, it is very important to consider which divorce jurisdiction would be most appropriate, as a poorly informed choice could have disastrous financial implications. For example, by divorcing through the UAE courts, a wife could not seek spousal maintenance from a husband, or a share of a husband’s pension; such claims could however be made through English or Australian courts.
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Divorce and Family Law
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