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Divorce in Indonesia: Guidelines From NP Consultant

(A) Indonesian Divorce Court

If one of the couples is married, a party can file for divorce in Indonesia court.

(1) is an Indonesian citizen
(2) Is domiciled in Indonesia at time of the lawsuit
(3) There is a strong connection to Indonesia.

(B) Divorce In Indonesia

Marriage in Indonesia is valid under Law Number 1 of 1974 (the “1974 Marriage Law”) if it is conducted by one of the recognized religions or beliefs in Indonesia, and/or registered with the Indonesian marriage registration agency.

Furthermore, Government Regulation Number 9 (75) on Implementation of the 1974 Marriage Law (“1975 Marriage Regulation”) also regulates.

A procedure to register a marriage. 1975 Marriage Regulation

(1) A marriage between Moslem couple shall be registered by the Religion Affairs Office (Kantor Urusan Agama (“KUA”));

(2) A marriage between a non-Moslem couple shall be registered by the Civil Registration Office (Kantor Catatan Sipil). (“Catatan Sipil”)

The governing law for divorcing is determined by the registration of marriage within Indonesia. This principle means that couples who are married in Indonesia from different religions will choose the one that will be used for their marriage. If they marry outside Indonesia, then they can register their marriage with the Indonesian marriage registry body KUA or Catatan Sipil.

The divorce of a Muslim couple is done in a religious court according to Islamic religious procedure regulations, as Islam is Indonesia’s main religion. A divorce proceeding for non-Moslem couples takes place in a general court according to general court procedure rules.

(C) Reasons to Get Divorced in Indonesia

A divorce can only be granted by the 1975 Marriage Law and 1975 Marriage Regulation.

(1) A party has committed adultery with another person or is a drug addict, an alcoholic, or gambler, and the difficulty of resolving these vices can strain the relationship.

(2) A party has separated for 2 (two), consecutive years without consent, legitimate reasons, or due to reasons beyond their/her control.

(3) A sentence has been given to one party for five (five) years or more after the wedding is completed.

(4) A party does severe cruelty or ill-treatment to another party, putting the victim’s life at risk.

(5) A spouse has a disability that makes it difficult to perform their duties as husband/wife.

(6) There are irreconcilable differences between the parties.

The above-mentioned grounds for divorce apply to both Moslem and Non-Moslem couples. However, the Islamic Law Compilation, which is a compilation of Islamic practices in Indonesia that serves as guidance in religious court proceedings, stipulates 2 (two), additional grounds for divorce for Moslem couples.

(7) A husband breaks talk Talak (a promise that the wife can divorce the husband for any particular event in the marriage; this is not an obligatory promise, but something that can be made between husband and wife).

(8) A party may become murtad, or change his/her religion to another religion. This can lead to irreconcilable disagreements.

(D) Divorce proceedings in Indonesia

(1) For Non-Moslem Couples

A divorce cannot be filed before the Court under Article 39 of the 1974 Indonesian Marriage Law. This is after the Court has tried and failed to reconcile the couple. Non-Moslem spouses must file a divorce suit, which can be submitted by either the husband/wife or his/her representative to a general court.

(2) For Moslem Couples

Art. 65 of Law No. 7 of 1989, Islamic Religious Court. Last modified by Law No. 50 of 2009 (Religious Court Law): A divorce can only be filed before the Court after the Court has tried and failed to reconcile the couple.

There are three types of divorce proceedings in religious courts under the Religious Court Law

(1) Thalak divorce refers to a request by a Moslem husband for a religious Court to hear a talk declaration from the husband requesting a divorcement. A talk divorce means that the husband may have to give his wife a proper mut’ah in the form of either money or goods. The court will decide the amount of mut’ah according to the husband’s ability.

(2) A divorce lawsuit is one filed by the spouse or her representative before the religious court.

(3) A divorce due to adultery can be obtained by providing complete and accurate evidence, or by the plaintiff signed an oath declaring that the defendant has committed adultery.

(E) Divorce Mediation in Indonesia

Divorce in Indonesia must be reviewed and decided by the Court. However, the Court is required to mediate between husbands and wives at the initial proceedings. The Court shall also try to reconcile the couple throughout Court proceedings.

In Indonesia, divorce cannot be completed by signing a document that states both spouses agree to divorce. It must be accomplished through a court order.

(F) Divorce Settlement Agreement

A divorce settlement agreement may be signed by the couples to regulate any post-divorce issues, including Child and spouse living costs, joint property distribution, and mut’ah, provided that they do not violate any family law lawyers surrey bc or regulations. The agreement can be rewritten into a Court decision (if requested by the parties) so that the Court can order them to comply with the divorce settlement agreement. This agreement will have the same legal effect as any court decision.