Guinea is predominantly a Muslim country. It’s estimated that 85% of the population adheres to the Islamic faith. Religious and customary practices influence marriage and divorce law despite the existence of a Civil Code. Differences between the divorce procedures in Guinea and the UK vary widely. As a firm of international divorce solicitors we represent people going through marital breakdown who are seeing advice in England but have connections to more than one country. If for example you are originally from Guinea – or you got married there but now reside in the UK – we are able to help ensure that you approach your family matter in the most practical and beneficial way for you. Settlements will differ depending on which country has jurisdiction in your case. Below, we look at some aspects of family law in Guinea
A New Civil Code For Guinea?
There are moves to reform family law in Guinea. A new Civil Code that enhances the rights of women (for example by giving them equal authority over children) was passed by the Guinean parliament in 2018. However the president refused to formally sign the Code into law because of controversial provisions that granted legal recognition of polygamy. As of December 2019 therefore the Civil Code of 1983 remained in force.
Grounds For Divorce In Guinea
The US State Department cites government officials in Guinea as acknowledging that divorce laws there tend to favour men when it comes to child custody and division of property. Evidence presented by women carries less weight than testimony provided by men.
The 1983 Civil Code grants men and women the equal right to start divorce proceedings although the grounds on which men can divorce are wider than those for women. Grounds for divorce include:
- Fault– although there are different standards of fault (The husband can obtain a divorce based purely in his wife’s adultery for example. If a wife wishes to rely on a husband’s adultery she most show that he committed adultery in the family home
- On the wife’s application for non-payment of a dowry
- Domestic abuse
- Refusal to perform conjugal duties
- Violation of the spouse’s dignity
Children And Property Division After Divorce In Guinea
Men and women do not have equal responsibility for children following divorce in Guinea. The Civil Code states, that unless there are exceptional circumstances, the father will have sole custody of any children over seven. In relation to property division husbands usually obtain a larger share of communal assets than wives.
Advice On Guinean Divorce
The differences between divorce laws in Guinea, including the approach to child arrangements and property division mean there could be significant variations in any settlement depending on whether English laws or the laws of Guinea apply to your divorce. We represent clients from around the world and even if we do not have direct experience of the Guinean legal system our expertise in advising on the legal approaches taken by different countries means we can assist you with effective and practical advice on most international aspects of your divorce.
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