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I married for money but now I regret

EVE WOMAN
By Harold Ayodo | September 21st 2013

family&law/

By HAROLD AYODO

Dear Harold,

We were married last year in a colourful church wedding that was highlighted in a popular wedding show programme on one of the local stations. However, I have, of late, been convinced that I made a mistake rushing into marrying a man I did not love but cared more about his money.

I have tried to force myself to be happy but it is not working. I recently sat my husband down and explained my reasons for wanting to opt out. What is the legal period when a married couple can file for divorce after marriage in church? And is there a time limit set to divorce on couples who are already separated following a court order?

Lucy, Nakuru

Dear Lucy,

Family law provides that a couple that underwent statutory marriage can seek divorce in court after being married for at least three years. A husband or wife can request the court to end the marriage within three years after proving that the spouse is extremely cruel. However, the Marriage Bill of 2007 seeks to reduce the period of seeking divorce to two years — down from the current three years. The bill aside, the spouse applying for divorce can convince the court that the union has irretrievably broken down — cannot be salvaged and part ways within three years. In addition, the three-year rule would not apply if the couple is under judicial separation meaning, a court ordered that they stop living under one roof as husband and wife. However, judicial separation only applies to couples that tied the knot either at the office of the District Commissioner, Attorney General’s chamber or statutory marriage—in church or garden wedding.

Got a family related legal issue? Ask the lawyer on [email protected]

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