About the Family Law Week blog

The Family Law Week Blog is a companion site to Family Law Week. It complements the news, cases and articles published on Family Law Week with additional comment and coverage of the wider aspects of family law.

The Blog is edited by Jacqui Gilliatt, of 4 Brick Court and Lucy Reed, of St Johns Chambers.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Family / Law Issues on Radio & Tv

The Chambers Part 2

Interesting piece about CRB Checks & Secret Letters on Ipm on Saturday and see this blogpost

In Divorce: Jewish Style, Channel 4's Revelations Series about the impact of religion tonight covered the "chained women" because under orthodox Jewish law only the husband can initiate the religious divorce or get. See also The Independent's coverage

Lynn Featherstone asks questions about Baby P on BBC News


Marilyn Stowe said...

The problems highlighted by the Channel 4 programme about Jewish divorce, only apply to Orthodox Jews. I regret what I regard as the lack of sensivity and understanding of the divorce process for Orthodox Jews.
Orthodox Jewish ecclesiastical law recognises that marriages do break down. It also recognises and accepts divorce when a marriage has irretrievably broken down. Unlike most divorce systems, the Orthodox Jewish divorce process is not fault based, but in fact requires consensus, not least to protect a vulnerable spouse from being divorced against their will.
Obtaining a Jewish Orthodox divorce is not difficult.There is no fact finding investigation and no court order is made against either party.
It is intended to be a civilised process by both parties acting in agreement, to end their marriage.
The process is overseen by a Jewish Ecclesiastical Court and takes a short period of time to implement.
Does it work? In all cases of Orthodox Jewish divorce in which I have been involved,it has done, with the parties(assisted by their lawyers, Jewish and non-Jewish) acting in a civilised sensible way and none of the nightmare scenarios of the programme.
As for the Jewish Courts, I have found them in Leeds Manchester and London, to be informed, courteous and willing to help.In one particular case I can recall a Rabbi mediating a contact dispute between an Othodox couple where the English court process had polarised the parties with findings of fault.
Family lawyers in England will be aware that a 'Get' should always be obtained between Decree Nisi and Decree Absolute, and if it is not, then in English law,it is possible an application to be made for Decreee Absolute to be postponed until the Get is in place.
The application is not specific only to Jewish divorce.
I hope this helps to give a more balanced perspective which I believe the programme failed to do.

sds said...

"I watched the Channel 4 TV programme and was extremely concerned that
an impression was given that Jewish divorce is entirely controlled by
the husband, and the wife has no say in the matter. I am pleased that
you have corrected this.
I write from experience. I was married in a Jewish Orthodox ceremony and
when the marriage broke down and we divorced in civil law, I felt it
wasn't appropriate to have a Jewish divorce at that time. It took place
only when I agreed to accept the Get, some considerable time later, and
not before, although my husband would have preferred to divorce much