We are a well-established family law firm specialising in domestic and international divorce. Our expertise in cross border family disputes – built up over decades – means we can offer comprehensive legal support to clients who seek advice regarding divorce and family law in England but who have who have UK/Sudanese links. Legislation in Sudan may impact your divorce settlement or the arrangements for your children if you have been married there or you or your spouse have Sudanese nationality but reside in the UK.
Family law in Sudan – like the entire legal system in the country– is in the process of transitioning to democracy (between 2019 and 2024). As the law on family and divorce evolves it’s important to get specialist advice if you are considering a divorce and your family has a connection to Sudan.
Sudanese Divorce – Background
When examining divorce and family law in Sudan a somewhat unclear picture emerges. Three types of religious court (Shar’ia, Christian/Civil and traditional) all play a part in regulating divorce. Many unofficial courts are also involved in deciding on finances and child issues following divorce.
The right to divorce will vary according to the religion of the spouses. Under the Muslim Personal Law a husband can initiate and finalise divorce himself (talaq) whereas a woman must initiate court proceedings to obtain a divorce. And then only in limited circumstances, including:
- A failure of the husband to fulfill his financial obligations
- In a polygamous marriage wives are not treated equally
- On the grounds of an incurable mental illness
- The husband’s absence for more than a year
In relation to children a woman will usually get custody of children until the age of seven (for boys) and nine (for girls). Occasionally custody awarded to the mother the mother can be extended if it is in the child’s interests.
Maintenance is payable to a wife and is means tested and limited to a period of six months.
Getting Advice On Sudanese Family Law
As the transition to democracy continues in Sudan, family law is likely to develop further. Pressure from human rights groups and others to end some of the discriminatory rules as they affect woman is growing. In light of this if there is a Sudanese angle to your divorce you should consider getting legal advice. It may be possible to issue proceedings in the UK where the approach to finances in particular is more favourable to the financially weaker spouse. At Brookman we work with individuals from a wide range of cultures and nationalities who are going through the divorce process and are seeking advice regarding the law in England. Even if we do not have direct experience of Sudanese family courts we nevertheless typically have the experience and resources to advise you on the current law and explain how it is likely to affect your divorce.
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