Divorce Law And Its Effect On The United States

2969 Words Dec 7th, 2014 12 Pages
Marriage was described by Lord Penzance as ‘an institution for life’, however the statistics show that there is an increasing trend in the divorce law. There has been a long history of reforming the law to its current stage. Until 1857 the only way of obtaining a divorce was through an Act of Parliament, however due to its expense, it was reserved for the wealthiest. The Matrimonial Cause Act 1857 for the first time created a possibility to divorce on the ground of adultery, which was gender-biased because wife had to prove aggravating circumstances in addition to the fact of adultery. Following it, the Matrimonial Causes Act 1923 allowed the husband and the wife to rely on adultery as a ground for divorce. The Matrimonial Causes Act 1937 created additional grounds for divorce, such as cruelty, incurable insanity and desertion. The divorce became more acceptable and therefore more couples decided to proceed with the divorce petitions and there was a need to remove fault. Consequently in 1966, both the Law Commission and a group convened by the Archbiskop of Cantenbury agreed that irretrievable breakdown should be the sole ground for divorce, which wasmentioned in the Divorce Reform Act 1969. This was incorporated into the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 (MCA 1973), which remains the current law.

Divorce under the MCA1973 is granted only if the couple has been married for at least one year. The petitioner need to prove that the marriage has irretrievably broken down and needs…
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