The Cambodian family law system is influenced by the French civil system and by customary law. It also contains elements of common law (originating from Britain) and of Vietnamese law. There is a Civil Code (2007) and a Constitution that represents the supreme law of the country.  We specialise in international divorce and related family law issues and can advise individuals going through divorce in England who have some legal connection to Cambodia. For those resident in the UK who were married in Cambodia or where one spouse is Cambodian, you should consider getting legal advice before beginning the process. The interaction between two or more systems of law may have an impact on the outcome of your case. We discuss some of the main aspects of Cambodian divorce law below.

Grounds For Divorce In Cambodia

If a couple agrees, a divorce by consent is appropriate. If the court is satisfied that there is a genuine desire on the part of both spouses to divorce it will issue a divorce order. Otherwise – in the absence of agreement – the grounds for divorce are the following:

  • Infidelity
  • Desertion without good reason
  • The death or life of the spouse being unknown for a year or more
  • Living apart contrary to the spirit of marriage for a year or more
  • A breakdown in the matrimonial relationship without any expectation of reconciliation

Under the Civil Code the court retains the right to dismiss an application for divorce if it believes granting it would cause severe ‘anguish or hardship ‘ to the spouse or children. It can also refuse a divorce if it finds that the spouse requesting the divorce is doing so in bad faith and has failed to cooperate or assist the other spouse.

Property Division In Cambodia

Courts will approve any property settlement that the parties to a divorce in Cambodia agree to, so long as it is ‘fair’ (Article 980 of the Civil Code). When there is no agreement the court will divide property having regard to:

  • The contribution of each spouse to the acquisition, maintenance and increase in value of the property
  • The length of the marriage
  • The age, mental and physical condition of each spouse,
  • Each spouse’s occupation
  • Income and earning capacity of the parties

Courts will also consider the welfare of any children when deciding how to divide marital assets.

Children And Cambodian Divorce

The Civil Code describes the parent who has custody of a child following divorce as the ‘parental power holder’. If the parties can’t agree on custody the court will base its decision solely on the interests of the child.

Unlike many other civil law systems the Cambodian Civil Code doesn’t provide for joint custody. The Code does however protect the parent who does not obtain custody by guaranteeing his or her right to meet and socialise with the child, and to be involved in decisions about education and similar matters.

Advice On Cambodian Divorce

If you have a connection to Cambodia and wish to divorce in England you should consider getting advice from international family law solicitors.  At Brookman we advise clients from all over the world so we know the issues that typically arise in international divorce. By anticipating hurdles we can help ensure your divorce proceeds as smoothly as possible. This experience of handling divorces impacted by different legal systems means we can effectively advise you on your divorce if you have any links to Cambodia or elsewhere.

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Henry Brookman has created several discussion videos in order to further explain some areas of divorce.

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Henry Brookman Discusses: Divorce
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I had a zoom consultation with Lauren Moir and she was incredible. Very patient, insightful and reassuring. She also advised me based on my previous conversations with another firm and also clarified various positions I am in. Highly recommend.

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About The Team

We are a specialist divorce and international divorce family law team, advising clients in the United Kingdom (specifically England and Wales) and throughout the world. We have a very people–orientated approach to working with clients. Henry Brookman has practised law for over 45 years, and our team has a wide range of skills and expertise. We are recommended by the Legal 500 and have been awarded the Law Society’s quality mark, Lexcel.

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Henry Brookman

With over 45 years' experience, Henry Brookman is the senior member of the team. He is described by The Legal 500 as ‘shrewd, savvy, sagacious and highly experienced’.

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Philip Morton

Recommended by The Legal 500, Philip is an expert in all areas of family law, including domestic and international financial disputes, fraud and commercial dispute resolution.

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Natasha Slabas

Expert in all areas of family law, often involving cases that have an international element, including work in relation to financial settlements following divorce.

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Aziz Malik

Aziz is a Partner at the firm and is highly regarded for his expertise on financial matters in divorce and is recommended by the Legal 500.

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Mark Rennie

Mark is the Group Head of the Horsham Family Law team. He specialises in all areas of matrimonial law, including complex divorce and financial disputes, and is recommended by The Legal 500.

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Nigel Winter

A highly experienced solicitor, Nigel has expertise in collaborative law, divorce, contested litigation, relationship agreements, and children matters. Nigel is recommended by The Legal 500.

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Samantha Jago

Partner at our Guildford office and recommended by The Legal 500, Samantha has specialist expertise in divorce, children matters, complex international cases, and is a trained mediator.

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Amanda Glass

Amanda is a highly experienced family law partner providing expert advice on all aspects of family law, divorce and separation with an emphasis on financial remedy cases.

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Alicia Cenizo

Alicia is a Partner in the family team and advises on all elements of family law, particularly private children work, including matters with an international element such as relocation.

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Joanna Potbury

Family law specialist based in Brighton advising on divorce, cohabitation agreements, children, post-nuptial agreements, and domestic violence. Joanna is recommended by The Legal 500.

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Kevin Danagher

Kevin specialises exclusively in family law, advising on all aspects of relationship breakdown, divorce, same sex marriage, marital agreements, and international family cases.

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Gemma Garrett

Based in Horsham, Gemma is a specialist advising on all areas of family law including divorce and separation (often involving jurisdiction issues), complex financial matters, and children matters.

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Kirsty Kelleher

Kirsty is a specialist family law solicitor recommended by The Legal 500. An expert in divorce, financial matters, child-related disputes and contentious probate cases.

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Ella Welsby

Known for her sensitivity and discretion combined with significant expertise, Ella advises on all family issues including high-value and multi-jurisdiction divorce and complex financial and children matters.

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Susan Hayes

Susan qualified as a solicitor in 1992 and is based at our Brighton office. She is a longstanding member of the Law Society Specialist Children Panel and Family Law Panel. Susan is also a trained Collaborative Lawyer.

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Lauren Moir

Lauren is a highly regarded specialist family law solicitor, based at our Guildford office. She advises on divorce, family finances, children matters, domestic abuse, cohabitee issues, and relationship agreements.

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Rachael Au

Rachael is a highly capable member of the family team in Brighton. She specialises in family law, advising on divorce, civil partnerships, financial matters, and children issues.

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Amber Matheson

Based at the Guildford office, Amber has experience dealing with family matters including divorce, finances, separation after cohabitation, arrangements for children and leave to remove cases.

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Amelia Groom

Amelia has experience across a full range of family matters, including divorce, complex disputes regarding finances that range from trusts through to cryptocurrencies, and arrangements for children.

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Michelle provides secretarial support to Henry Brookman. A very experienced family law secretary, Michelle has worked in law for over 12 years.

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