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European divorce laws for European couples

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Freedom of movement and employment throughout the European Union has inevitably resulted in a large number of inter-European marriages.

In recognition of this, the European Union Legal Affairs Committee has approved rules to allow divorcing couples to choose the law of one of their countries of origin or of residence to govern their divorce proceedings. If they fail to agree, the rules will include a mechanism for resolving the issue.

The rules are due to be ratified by Parliament in December 2010 and are likely to be implemented by the member states in around eighteen months’ time. They reflect the aim of enhanced cooperation between the member states of the European Union. They are also designed to improve clarity in the international divorce process and to stop one party from rushing to divorce the other so that a particular law prevails.

However, the regulation is limited to proceedings relating to the grounds of divorce and not those involving property, children or the legality of the marriage.

The European Commission has been requested to make any necessary amendments to existing legislation to deal with a situation where the law of a Member State does not provide for divorce or does not deem the marriage in question valid.

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Written by Andrew Hodges

December 17, 2010 at 4:17 pm

Posted in Comment, LinkedIn, New Law

Tagged with , ,

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