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Understanding Causes for Divorce in Israel: Legal Grounds and Implications


Divorce is a complex and emotionally challenging process that varies across different countries and cultures. In Israel, divorce cases often begin as lawsuits for the division of assets, custody, and child support, rather than directly as divorce suits. This unique approach, along with specific legal grounds for divorce defined by Halacha (Jewish law) and Rabbinic case law, sets Israel apart from other Western countries. Understanding the causes for divorce and the legal implications can help individuals navigate this process effectively.

Legal Grounds for Divorce: In Israel, spouses must have adequate legal grounds to sue for divorce in the Rabbinic courts. These legal grounds are based on both familiar issues seen in popular media and those unique to Jewish law. Adultery, spousal abuse (physical or verbal), impotence, infertility, gambling, alcoholism, and unwillingness to have marital relations are among the causes for divorce recognized in the Rabbinic court. These grounds serve as the foundation for initiating divorce proceedings and addressing related issues such as division of assets and child custody.

Implications of Legal Grounds: Understanding the legal grounds for divorce is crucial, as it can impact the outcome of related matters. If one party lacks proper legal grounds, the case may be dismissed in the Rabbinic court. This can provide an opportunity to pursue issues such as child custody and division of assets in the Family court instead. It is important to consult with divorce legal counsel in Israel to assess the viability of the legal grounds for divorce and determine the appropriate course of action.

Intent and Divorce Proceedings: Intent plays a significant role in divorce proceedings within the Rabbinic court. If it is determined that a suit for divorce was brought solely to pressure the other party without genuine intent to end the marriage, the case may be dismissed. Proof of continued marital relations during divorce proceedings can also lead to the dismissal of a case. It is essential to approach divorce proceedings with honesty and integrity to ensure a fair and valid process.

Rebellious Wife and Consequences: Within the context of Jewish law, the concept of a rebellious wife (Eesha Moredet) holds particular significance. A woman deemed rebellious by the Rabbinic court may face consequences such as losing financial support from her husband while still married and forfeiting payments stipulated in the Jewish marriage contract (Katoova). It is important to note that the Jewish marriage contract payment (Dmei Katoova) is only available to women married through a Jewish wedding within Israel.

Practical Considerations: In light of the potential implications, practical considerations during divorce proceedings become essential. Changing household care routines before the divorce, even if the relationship is strained, may influence the amount of financial entitlements in the long term. Continuing to perform tasks such as food preparation and laundry for the spouse, despite personal feelings, can contribute to a stronger case when addressing financial matters.

Navigating divorce in Israel requires a deep understanding of the legal grounds and implications associated with the process. Recognizing the specific legal grounds for divorce, the importance of genuine intent, and the consequences faced by a rebellious wife can guide individuals through this challenging period. Seeking legal advice and adhering to practical considerations can help ensure a fair and equitable outcome as individuals transition to the next phase of their lives.

*Remember, you are not alone.  There are resources and support available to help you. Please reach out for help.

We are here to help and advise you.  Contact me Jay Hait, Family Lawyer at 0733743094 or jay.hait@orcheidin.co.il

Find out more on my

YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@JayHaitAdv

and on my website: https://jayhaitlaw.com/

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