What is Default Divorce in Pakistan?


Default divorce is also called true divorce, no-fault divorce, or ex-party divorce. The default divorce in Pakistan means that a female filed a case for divorce in the family court, but the husband did not appear or show up in court. In this situation, the court will not wait for the husband for an unlimited period of time. The court will proceed with the proceedings of divorce in Pakistan even if the husband is appearing before the court either personally or through an attorney. The proceeding for the case of divorce in the family court requires that the husband, as the defendant, be notified through a notice that a case is initiated against him. After receiving the notice, it is the duty of the husband to appear in court. If the husband is not appearing in court, the wife may request to enter default divorce, which we call a request to initiate ex-party proceedings. Once the court orders the divorce without the appearance of the husband, it is termed a no-fault divorce or default divorce in Pakistan.


In Pakistan, for a wife, there is a different process to obtain divorce, which we call khula in Pakistan, and for the husband, the procedure is different. When the wife approaches the court with a case of khula, the court notices the husband. The notices are sent legally to the address of the husband, or if the husband is missing, the notices can be sent to the address where the husband last resided. If the court is satisfied that proper notices were served, then in addition to that, the court may also give an order for the publication in the newspaper. If, even after the publication in the newspaper, the husband does not appear in court, a request to enter default divorce in Pakistan can be given by the wife

No-Fault Divorce:

Default divorce is also termed no-fault divorce. From the name, you can assume the meaning of this kind of divorce. The duty of the wife or her council was to send the notices to the husband on the orders of the court. If the wife’s council has properly sent the notices and the husband has not appeared in court, then it is not the wife’s fault, therefore the court’s order of divorce is termed a no-fault divorce. In Pakistan, just obtaining the court’s order for divorce is not enough. After the court orders, you have to also wait for a period of three months to obtain the divorce certificate in Pakistan, as legally, a wife is divorced only when she has her certificate other than the court decree.


A default divorce judgment cannot be reversed because the family law is very clear that there can be no appeal against the court decree of divorce. You can hire a lawyer in Pakistan and file an appeal. There is no bar to filing an appeal in the higher courts against the default divorce, but after filing the appeal, it will be rejected. In its previous judgment, the high court categorically said that even if the notices were not properly served or received by the husband, the ex-party proceedings started after the publication of the newspaper, which was sufficient to assume the proper serving of the notices.


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