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09 July 2024

Harriet Errington and Laura Hallahan were successful in achieving recognition of a foreign divorce in the case of TI v LI [2024]

Harriet Errington and Laura Hallahan, with the assistance of Oliver Stacey, acted on behalf of the Respondent Husband in the reported case of TI v LI [2024] EWFC 163 (B) regarding the validity of a Pakistani divorce. Instructing Timothy Bishop KC and Kyra Cornwall of 1 Hare Court, they were successful in achieving recognition of a Pakistani divorce obtained by the Husband.

The case concerned an application by the Wife to commence divorce proceedings in England and Wales. The Husband challenged the jurisdictional basis for this application and applied for recognition of divorce proceedings brought in Pakistan in 2016-2017, which the Husband argued were valid. The Wife claimed that the Pakistani divorce was invalid and should not be recognised, alleging that she did not receive the divorce papers from the Pakistani authority and was not aware of the divorce until January 2023.

The Court found that the Wife did know about the Pakistani divorce in 2016 and was given reasonable opportunity to participate in the proceedings. The Judge concluded that (i) the divorce was valid and effective under Pakistani law and (ii) this court should recognise the same, thereafter dismissing the Wife’s divorce application and granting the Husband’s application for recognition of the Pakistani divorce.

The Judgment also provides a helpful analysis of the current law on jurisdictional grounds for divorce and habitual residence post-Brexit. The Judge determined that the Wife had not acquired a domicile of choice and nor was she habitually resident in England and Wales as at the date of issue of her divorce application.

You can read the full Judgment here:

For further information, please contact Harriet Errington or Laura Hallahan or your usual contact in the Family Department or, alternatively, telephone on 020 7465 4300.

To learn more about divorce and separation you can download a free copy of our Essential Guide to Divorce and Family Law here.

About the Author
Harriet Errington
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Laura Hallahan
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