Obtan Divorce

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Before any of the parties can apply for a Divorce, you must be married for a minimum of two (2) years and must have lived separate and apart for a minimum of one (1) year before you can apply for the Divorce. You must have a certified copy of the Marriage Certificate available.

The process involves the signing of a Petition which gives details of the marriage and how it broke down. If there are any children under the age of 18 years an affidavit sworn before a Justice of the Peace or Notary Public has to accompany the petition outlining the Arrangements for the Children. This include the names, dates of birth and addresses of the children and the arrangement in place for their support and maintenance.

The documents i.e. Petition and Affidavit relating to the Children if there are any are filed in the Supreme Court and Court fees of $2,000.00 are payable. After the Registrar of the Supreme Court certifies and seals the petition, it is ready for delivery upon the other party to the marriage.

Please note that the petition must be delivered to the other party in person and the Petitioner must get someone else to deliver it, he must not do so himself.

When the other party gets the documents he does not have to do anything with them, he does not have to sign anything and he does not have to respond if he does not wish to. Once the Petitioner ensures that the petition has been delivered the person who delivers it must sign an Affidavit of Service to be filed at the Supreme Court stating when and where it was delivered.

Usually if the petition was delivered in Jamaica then after 14 days have passed and if there is no response the Attorney will file other documents requesting a date for the Decree Nisi to be granted. The whole process could take 6-8 months at a cost ranging from $50,000 - $100,000 for more complicated Divorces.

Other Points to Note If the other party does not respond or do anything at all when he receives the Petition, the applicant can get a Default divorce, meaning, he does not have to go to Court at all. This was introduced in September 2006.

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