When you choose to terminate your marriage, you must also prepare for a deluge of other stressful events in your life. You may need to find new accommodation and make crucial decisions regarding your property and assets. Those who have children also need to work out a new parenting schedule.
There are so many emotional turmoils in a divorce that very often, you do not completely understand the legal process. You have several questions in your head that you seek answers to. Being informed about the legal process can help you get through a divorce more easily.
If you have decided to get divorced, here are a few points to consider before filing for divorce:
What are the grounds for divorce?
You can get a divorce in Singapore, provided you have been married for at least three years. The only ground for divorce in Singapore is that your marriage must have broken down beyond repair.
The following circumstances may help prove that your marriage’s irreparably broken down:
Adultery and unreasonable behaviour
If your spouse has been unfaithful or displays unreasonable behaviour such that you can’t be expected to cohabitate, it can prove that the marriage is beyond repair.
Related Article: 10 points to consider before filing for Divorce based on Adultery
If your spouse has deserted you continuously for two years, you may be eligible to file for divorce.
Related Article: Divorce based on Desertion for 2 Years
If you have been living apart for three years consensually or four years without consent, you may be able to apply for a divorce.
Related Article: Methods Of Separation Before Pursuing Divorce In Singapore
Can we be separated under one roof?
Yes, you may; however, you would need to show the following:
- You and your spouse have different sleeping arrangements.
- There is a significant reduction in family outings and other shared activities.
- Both of you are financially independent, like having separate bank accounts.
- A decreased number of household chores that you do for each other.
Do I need a copy of the marriage certificate?
Yes, you would need to have a copy of the marriage certificate to file for divorce.
What if I was married overseas?
If your spouse is a foreign citizen, you may apply for a divorce in Singapore even if you were married overseas. However, if both of you are foreign citizens, you can apply for the divorce process only if you have been a Singapore resident for at least three years. We recommend you consult an Expat divorce lawyer for more information on how to divorce in Singapore.
But I do not want a divorce, what can I do?
The main question here is, do you want to reconcile? If yes, then we suggest you consult a good counsellor to resolve the issues between both of you. However, if your spouse meets the requirements of divorce in Singapore, they can go ahead and file for divorce, whether you want it or not.
What about child custody?
The family court in Singapore considers several things before awarding child custody. Keeping the best interest of the child in mind, the court may grant sole custody or joint custody.
What about maintenance for the children?
All children under 21 are entitled to financial support from their biological parents. The parents must contribute to the maintenance of the children after 21 years if the child has a mental or physical disability. If a child over 21 is studying or serving full-time national service, they may also be entitled to maintenance.
Related Post: Podcast On Child Custody & Child Maintenance
What about the house, investments, CPF, and so on?
In Singapore, the divorce process comprises 2 steps- the dissolution of the marriage and the ancillary stage. The family court will be responsible for the division of matrimonial assets like a house, investment, or CPF during the ancillary stage.
When can I get married again?
You can remarry only after you have received the Final Judgement, which completes your divorce process.
If you have more questions, we suggest you get in touch with a good divorce lawyer. A knowledgeable and experienced divorce lawyer would be able to explain the entire process and quell any doubts that you may have.
We’re here for you
Our lawyers at GJC Law offer a free 30-minute consultation to explain the divorce process and determine whether you qualify for divorce in Singapore.
Our goal is to help you find a resolution that works for you.