An analysis of Divorce, Divorce law and Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh

Divorce, Divorce law and Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh, An Overview:

An analysis of Divorce, Divorce law and Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh is an attempt to explain the Muslim Divorce law in Bangladesh.  Divorce, in short, a legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other competent body. So in particulars, Divorce is the termination of a marriage or conjugal union, the canceling and/or rearranging of the legal duties of marriage, thus disbanding the ties of marriage between a married couple under the rule of law of a particular country and/or state. The law and provisions for divorce as stated in the Muslim Family Law Ordinance, 1961 is a codified law deals with the Muslim Marriage and Divorce in Bangladesh. when a man or woman or both mutually decide for dissolution of their marriage, then a Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh can play a vital role as saving a husband (mostly)  or wife, while he/she was going through an emotional episode because of the divorce, from prison, compensation  or any other trouble that might cause from the legal suit of the other party to the marriage.

A brief step by step analysis regarding Divorce, Divorce law and Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh is as follows:


Divorce in Bangladesh:

In Bangladesh, at present days the Divorce has become a legal issue and such legal issue always addresses and deals with all three stages of divorce, that is, prior to sending the Divorce Notice, at the time of 90 days statutory waiting period and after the expiration of the statutory period. Though Divorce occurred in between the husband and wife but sometimes it affects more than the couple e.g. their close family members and relatives socially. Divorce is a legal matter but sometimes it involves social impact too especially around the couple’s family.

It is a common scenario in Bangladesh that a  simply divorce between to human being raises many legal issues that consequently leads the couple to the courts. In such situation, the divorce lawyers/ divorce attorneys can become the faithful and confident friend to such couple for a safe way out from such complications. So, to avoid jail, compensation or unwanted hassle,  it is strongly advised if someone go through a divorce , he/she must receive professional help like hiring a Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh.


Muslim Divorce law in Bangladesh:


In developed countries, it is a common practice that for a divorce or separation the couple require and/or prefer lawyers or attorneys but so far in Bangladesh the parties do not always want to hire lawyers for divorce. The reason behind such attitude is not only because of the financial weakness of the couple but also the lack of understanding regarding the judicial complication they might face, commonly the husband, while they go through such divorce procedure.

In Bangladesh, even today,  there is a strong lack of practice in regard to mutual separation or divorce like the developed countries, though there is already available law for mutual divorce in Bangladesh. Naturally, when one party wants to separate from his/her partner in very few cases the other party accepts the same that leads to the party receiving divorce notice file legal suit, for genuine cause or not,  in order to stop the separation.

The Divorce law in Bangladesh includes both Muslim sharia Divorce i.e. Pronouncing of word Talaq and registration of Talaq with a Muslim Marriage and Talaq Registrar or Kazi. Section 7 of the Muslim Family Law Ordinance 1961 explains the procedure of Talaq. They are as follows:

(1) Any man who wishes to divorce his wife shall, as soon as possible after the pronouncement of Talaq in any form whatsoever, give the chairman notice in writing of his having done so, and shall supply a copy thereof to the wife.

(2) whoever contravenes the provisions of sub-sec(1) shall be punishable with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or with fine which may extend to{ten thousand Taka} or with both.

(3) save as provided in sub-sec(5),  a Talaq, unless revoked earlier, expressly or otherwise, shall not be effective until the expiration of 90 (ninety days) from the day on which notice under sub-section (1) is delivered to the chairman.

(4) Within thirty days of the receipt of notice under sub-section (1), the chairman shall constitute an arbitration council for the purposes of bringing about a reconciliation between the parties, and the arbitration council shall take all steps necessary to bring about such reconciliation.

(5) If the wife be pregnant at the time Talaq is pronounced, Talaq shall not be effective until the period mentioned in sub-section (3) or the pregnancy, whichever be letter, ends.

(6) Nothing shall debar a wife whose marriage has been terminated by Talaq effective under this section from re-marrying the same husband, without an intervening marriage with a third person, unless such termination is for the third time so effective.”

Section 6 of the Marriages and Divorces (Registration) Act 1974 explains the registration process and requirements of Divorce or Talaq. They are as follows:

(1) A Nikah registrar may register divorce effected under Muslim law within his jurisdiction on application being made to him for such registration.

(2) An application for registration of a divorce shall be made orally by the person or persons who has or have effected the divorce. Provided that if the women be a pardanshin, such application may be made by her duly authorized Vakil.

(3) The Nikah registrar shall not register a divorce of the kind known as talaq-i-tafweez except on the production of document registered under the registration act,1908, by which the husband delegated the power of divorce to the wife or of an attested copy of any entry in the register of marriages showing that such delegation has been made.

(4) Where the Nikah Register refuses to register a divorce, the person or persons who applied for such registration may, within thirty days of such refusal, prefer an appeal to the Registrar and the order passed by the register on such appeal shall be final.”

So in summary the process of divorce in Bangladesh just in three steps for both Husband and Wife (When power of giving Divorce has been delegated in the Kabin under section 8 of the 1961 Ordinance) who are looking for separation:

  1. Give Notice in writing to other party to the marriage and Chairman
  2. Face the Arbitration Board for reconciliation ; and
  3. After expiry of 90 days receive a registration certificate from a registered Nikah Registrar (Kaji).

It should be noted that , giving notice for divorce is itself a presumption that the Dower Money (Mohrana) has been paid in full but in practice this is not the case as as in most scenarios it has been appeared that a part or full Denmahar is unpaid and then it becomes the duty of the divorce lawyers to ensure payment of dower before completion of Divorce. Furthermore,  at the time of instigating the divorce process the husband should be informed about paying three months maintenance (Iddat) to the wife and other maintenance for the children.  Just to avoid court proceedings a lawyer communicates with the notice receiver (wife) and try his/her best for negotiating all the monetary issues involve in the divorce. For the wife,  above said three steps are applicable for divorce but technically and legally she is not in a position to pay any Dower Money to her Notice receiver husband though she will be responsible for maintenance of her minor children.

The notice receiver wife can file a suit under the Muslim Family Law Ordinance 1961 for dower money and maintenance for herself and the children living with her in a family court , which in nature is a civil suit.

The Supreme Court of Bangladesh held that “Talaq in any form shall not stand effective and talaq shall not be talaq in the eye of law unless provision contained in section 7 (1) of the Muslim Family Laws Ordinance 1961 is sternly complied with…”. So even Supreme Court of Bangladesh made it clear that a divorce must follow the above three steps divorce procedure otherwise such divorce will not legally valid.

If a Notice was served and Talaq was registered under Section 6 of the Marriages and Divorces (Registration) Act 1974 as stated above,  a legal Divorce or Talaq will be executed. It should be noted that Muslim Divorce in Bangladesh does not involve any court proceedings.

Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh:

The lawyers in Bangladesh who are practicing family matters under the Family Court Ordinance, 1985 are introduced as Divorce Lawyers. But none in Bangladesh are exclusively practicing on Divorce law matters, so divorce lawyers generally means the lawyers practicing family law matters. There are very few law chambers or firms in Dhaka practicing family matters among those Limpid Advisers & Co. (LAC) is one of leading Family Law practitioner in Bangladesh. In our country most of the Divorce or family matters involved with the issues of maintenance, dower, Alimony or maintenance and some other topics criminal in nature and only a divorce or family matter lawyer can get the proper remedy for you. So it can be highly suggested that whoever going through a divorce, he/she must seek lawyer’s help.


Legal complications in Divorce procedure:

In Bangladesh the Divorce Lawyers have been asked a very common question before starting divorce proceedings is whether his wife can file a criminal case against him or not. Giving divorce to his partner is a statutory right of the husband recognized by Muslim family laws and the wife has the same right if delegated by the husband under section 8 of the Ordinance 1961.

When we discuss about the Divorce issues, it is very important to consider regarding the laws namely Nari-O- Shishu Nirjatan Daman Ain, 2000 and Dowry Prohibition Act, 1980.

In most cases where the husband served notice for divorce to his partner/wife, then he/she,  after being informed about the Divorce Notice initiates a/several criminal case(s) against the notice sender. In all cases wife don’t admit about receiving the Notice by showing a date of occurrence prior to the date of notice. Most of the time the criminal cases have been filed before the learned Magistrate who forward majority of cases to the concerned Police Stations with a direction for taking legal steps after inquiry or to record the same as First Information Report (FIR). The sufferers who have faced such false cases under some common sections of the above 1980 and 2000 Acts for example section 3 & 4 of 1980 Act explains penalty for giving or taking dowry and penalty for demanding dowry respectively. Furthermore, section 11 of 2000 Act deals with allegation of physically hurting wife by husband or his family members while demanding dowry.


Divorce, Divorce law and Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh, Recommendations:

Finally , it is to be said that the process of divorce is merely an official process guided by the Muslim Family Laws Ordinance, 1961 and the Marriages and Divorces (Registration) Act 1974 . But for smooth and safe dissolution of marriage the parties to the marriage have been advised to contact with an expert lawyer in this matter.  It should be remembered that before starting divorce process someone must be very sure that Divorce is the only and last way available for him/her to solve the existing problems between them , because divorce among them may cause great impact upon their dearest family members .

An analysis of Divorce, Divorce law and Divorce lawyer in Bangladesh

Written By: Sheikh Saiful Islam Rajib

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