Grounds for Divorce in Cyprus
Getting a divorce in Cyprus? Under Cyprus law, a marriage can be dissolved after a divorce petition has been filed on behalf of either spouse, on the following grounds:
- Deterioration of the marital relationship has led to an irretrievable breakdown
- A continuous separation for a period of FOUR years.
Responsibility for the Cause
An irretrievable breakdown will be presumed (unless there is contrary evidence) in cases of Bigamy, Adultery, Desertion, an Attempt against the Petitioner’s life, or a Change of Sex.
Responsibility for the cause of the breakdown has no influence on the other rights and obligations of the spouses, so there is often no incentive to contest the petition. If one of the spouses is absent from the court hearing, a divorce can be quickly issued and completed within around 4 – 6 months from the filing of the divorce papers.
Divorce in Cyprus under Religious Marriages
Family Courts also have exclusive legal powers to dissolve religious marriages, so it is not necessary for a divorce to be issued by the church. However, it is possible to face problems if the petitioner wishes to remarry in a religious ceremony unless a religious divorce is first issued in addition to a civil law divorce.
A divorce in a marriage conducted according to the Orthodox religion legally requires an official notice, followed by a period of THREE months before filing for the divorce petition.
Cyprus lawyers, Michael Legal Firm are Family Law specialists with over 25 years’ experience in the successful negotiation of Divorce settlements.
If you wish to discuss any family law issue, speak in confidence with us today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Cyprus divorce law states that in the case of civil weddings, an application may be filed before the Court, in the district the applicant lives in, at any time. But in the case of religious weddings, the applicant will need to send a Notice of Marriage Dissolution to the Bishop, three months before filing the divorce application at the Family Court. Nationality is not a factor. The Cypriot courts can deal with any divorce applications as long as the parties have lived in Cyprus for at least three months prior to the filing of the divorce application.
The divorce rate in Cyprus is of the highest in Europe, one in five marriages ending in divorce. The divorce procedure in Cyprus require that in the case of a civil marriage, the concerned party may directly apply the issuing of divorce to the court with no preceding action. This is Cyprus civil marriage law.
Yet in the case of a religious marriage, the concerned party will need to notify the competent Bishop, while stating the grounds for divorce, three months prior to filing the divorce petition at court.
Cyprus Legislation requires the existence of ‘an irretrievable breakdown’ of the marriage, which must be proven in order to be able to proceed with a divorce claim. Grounds for divorce include the serious breakdown of the relationship, infidelity, immoral behaviour, violence or physical abuse, mental disorder, refusal of one spouse to have children, change of religion or the spouse declared dead or missing. Inexcusable absence for over two (2) years, separation for over five (5) years or imprisonment of a spouse for over seven (7) years also constitute grounds for divorce. A final ground for divorce is the inability to have sexual intercourse which existed at the time of the marriage and continued for six (6) months and during the divorce proceedings.
Marriage in Cyprus can be conducted through church or through any of the municipalities in Cyprus. For divorce purposes, if the marriage was celebrated at a Church, which makes the marriage a ‘religious marriage’, the concerned party will need to send a Notice of Marriage Dissolution to the competent Bishop. Three months later, the divorce application will need to be filed at the Court along with the proof of posting the notification to the Bishop. The Marriage Certificate as well as the exact date of marriage will also be needed.
Depending on the situation of each case, the cost may vary. For information about Cyprus divorce costing, do not hesitate to contact us at +357 25737315. As lawyers in Limassol with over 25 years of experience we are committed to handle each individual case in total confidentiality in order to receive the best negotiation of divorce settlements.
Once the divorce petition is filed at court and served to the other side. If the respondent does not dispute the petition and thus avoids appointing a lawyer, the divorce may be issued in two months. Otherwise, the case can take much longer.