The word "divorce" is firmly established in the Russian language: according to statistics, almost every second marriage ends with divorce.

Part 1


Think clearly about your decision

You should be aware of and consider the risk of divorce, and be prepared for it. I will not bring up the rules and procedures of divorce in your country, since I am no expert in this field. Instead, I will try to briefly describe the procedure of divorce in Russia (the divorce procedure in Ukraine and in Belarus slightly differs).

If you are going to divorce, try to analyze the situation calmly. Make up your mind about getting divorced only if other options are unacceptable. If you do decide for a divorce, take a business and legal approach from the onset. 

There’s no need to start the process of mutual accusations and humiliations. Even if your relatives, friends or colleagues try to assure you that it is your wife who is to blame for the divorce, don't listen to them and don’t try to revenge on your spouse. The calmer you come to the divorce procedure, the more chances you have to preserve normal relationships after the dissolution of your marriage.


2 ways to get a divorce

There are two ways of getting divorced in Russia – in the registry office, or in the court.

  • One can choose to terminate the marriage in the registry office if the divorce is a mutual decision of the spouses, and they have no common minor children. In this case, they should contact the Registrar's office and write a statement for divorce. Spouses are usually given a month for possible reconciliation, and if they don't change their decision, the marriage is terminated. As a confirmation of divorce, you will receive a divorce certificate.

  • If you have juvenile children, or if one of the spouses does not agree to divorce, the marriage must be terminated by a judicial order. Also, you have to go to the court in case there is a property dispute between the spouses (the question of property division will be resolved solely in a judicial proceeding). During judicial divorce, the court shall consider the interests of each spouse and their minor children. The divorce of the parents in any case should not adversely impact the lives of children.


The rights of the wife upon divorce according the Russian law

This issue requires a careful examination. 

  • If the marriage was concluded with a marriage contract, all rights to movable and immovable property that are registered in the contract will remain unchanged. 

  • If during cohabitation the couple has had children, they automatically remain with your wife. Rarely there are exceptions when children are able to choose with whom they stay. 

  • If a marriage contract was not concluded, all the property that was acquired during the period of cohabitation must be divided in half.

So – secure yourself with a marriage contract before you get married.

Author of the article is Shmilovitch Michael,

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