FAQ Regarding Divorce Law

Divorce has legal implications that require many procedures for divorce law. These are issues other than those that are governed by Federal Law No. (28) of 2005 regarding personal status in the UAE (the Personal Status Law). The Personal Status Law elaborates divorce as the dissolution of the legitimate marriage contract and indicated that a divorce is a legitimate act, whether it is verbally or in writing, or it is understood by a clear signal in the event of a disability. Many of the queries regarding divorce are aimed to be answered in this article.

What are the types of Divorce laws in the UAE?

Divorce is categorized into two types i.e. revocable and irrevocable. Irrevocable divorce is further divided into two types, a major divorce, and a minor divorce.

  • Revocable Divorce

As per the provisions of Article (104) of the Personal Status divorce Law, revocable divorce is the divorce in terms of which the marriage contract does not end until the waiting period has expired, which determines that the husband is still allowed to return to his wife before the expiry of the waiting period. It is important to note that, this type of divorce does not terminate the marriage contract and the divorce is considered null if the man returns his wife, whether by word or deed. However, if the waiting period ends, and the husband does not return his wife, the divorce has entered into the judgment of irrevocable divorce by Baynunah Sugar.

  • Irrevocable Divorce as a Minor Baynunah(minor divorce Law) 

This category of divorce is considered when the husband makes the oath of divorce only once or twice, i.e. not the required 3 times and he did not return his wife during the waiting period. Moreover, the husband has the right to return his wife if he divorces her utilizing a final divorce but only through a new contract and dowry, with her consent.

  1. Irrevocable divorce is a Major Baynunah(major divorce)

IT is the final type of divorce is final and implies that the two spouses must be separated. It is not permissible for the one who divorced his wife three times to return her, except after the expiry of the waiting period (Idda) from the other husband who had sensual knowledge of her according to a valid marriage.

What is Divorce by Harm?

The Personal Status Law enacted in the text of Article No. (117) that both spouses, if the continuation of their marital partnership is not possible, have the right to request a divorce if there is definite harm caused to one of the parties. This is called a divorce of harm and is applied according to the laws of many countries. As per Article (16) of the Personal Status Law, the Family Orientation Committee shall endeavor to reconcile the two spouses and, in case of failure, the judge shall propose reconciliation to the spouses. It is important to note that the judge can differentiate between spouses for harm if it is proven that the wife was severely beaten by the husband in front of just witnesses.

Moreover, it is proven that the husband has abandoned his wife for more than six months. However, in such cases, the court must verify that the harm that the applicant for divorce invokes has reached such a degree that it is no longer possible for him or her to continue with the marriage.

What is Consensual or Friendly Divorce?

The Personal Status Law in the UAE regarding divorce procedures first requires registration in the Family Guidance Department, which is a mandatory procedure for completing divorce procedures and allows spouses to express their concerns related to the marriage.

What is an Absentee Divorce?

Divorce in absentia is the divorce whereby a husband signed and pronounced, without the presence of his wife, an explicit statement of his intention to divorce her. Divorce in absentia may be necessary in circumstances where, for example, the spouses do not reside together in one place or are in different countries.

What are the Procedures for Divorce of Expatriates in the UAE?

The UAE Personal Status Law permits divorce for expatriates just as it permits them to marry. Article 1 of the Personal Status Law stipulates that the provisions of the law, including those relating to divorce, shall apply to citizens of the United Arab Emirates as well as non-citizens unless they insist on applying the laws of their home country.

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