How To Dissolve Marriage Within the TWO (2) Years of Registration?

Section 50 of the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976 (Act) sets out that no marriage shall be capable of being dissolved unless such a marriage has surpassed the period of two years upon it being registered.

Nevertheless, the Act also provides for the exception of the prohibition which can be found under Section 50(2) of the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976. The provision provides that a presentation for divorce within the period of 2 years may be allowed on the grounds that the case falls under an exceptional circumstance or the petitioner has suffered hardship from the said marriage.

Therefore, first of all, it must be proven that there is the existence of exceptional circumstance or hardship suffered by the Petitioner.

What Amounts to “Exceptional Circumstance”?

The provision in the Act does not provide what amount to an ‘exceptional circumstance”. However, the phrase can be apprehended by referring to the decided case law for example the case of Kiranjit Kaur A/P Kalwant Singh v Chandok Narinderpal Singh [2009] MLJU 1241. The Petitioner may consult his or her divorce lawyer to determine whether their case fall under exceptional circumstance based on the decided case law.

What Happens Next?

  1. Upon leave granted by the Court for the parties to file divorce within the period of 2 years of marriage, the Petitioner may appoint a lawyer to proceed to apply to High Court Sarawak for a decree nisi and must provide a supporting statement that confirms the initial petition’s contents.
  2. However, prior to that, the Court must be fully satisfied that all the necessary procedures have been complied with.
  3. If the court is completely satisfied with the evidence provided, then the judge will file a certificate that entitles the petitioner to a decree nisi and arranges a date when the decree will be read out in court.
  4. The last step would be the granting of a Certificate of Making Decree Nisi Absolute by Divorce as in Form 9 of the Rules 1980. This certificate is to acknowledge the divorce between the parties. After the Certificate as in Form 9 of the Rules 1980 is granted, lawyer will submit all the relevant documents to the Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara (Bahagian Perkahwinan & Perceraian) to update the marital status of the Petitioner. Once the marital status being updated, then divorce for a non-Muslim couple in Malaysia is complete.

If you have any questions or require any additional information, please contact our lawyer that you usually deal with.

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