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Coronavirus Outbreak: Adv Pratibha Bangera shares her thoughts on Divorce and Family cases

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Q. How do you see Corona affecting divorce cases?

If a marriage is strong this phase will help a couple bond better but if it was a problem marriage, staying together will certainly drive them apart. Couples may even adjust during this crisis temporarily during “social distancing phase” but there could be an outburst once things return to normalcy. Habits and vices are hard to change unless the change is within and self-reformatory. People who are already in court may not compromise or reconcile because of Corona scare.

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Q. Does staying too close in family breed more cruelty.

Every divorce is preceded with a cause of action. Without a real cause of action registration of case also becomes difficult. If a married couple is already going through conflicts, these testing situations may reach a point of explosion. While police is dealing with corona alerts they may also receive phone calls from people who are victims of domestic abuse

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Q. What is typical about Indian set up and family environment that leads to divorce.

Divorce and Ego go hand in hand. Some people respond to simple requests with love while others may get violent. Whether it is a joint family or a mono family set up problems arise when one person is constantly being difficult and demanding and the other person is humiliated and forced to adjust. Without wooing, loving and caring for a partner a marriage cannot exist for long. Marriages that lack romance and fidelity end up in divorce

Q. Is the court equipped to handle ego clashes and distinguish it from real cruelty or danger situations.

All divorce petitions are admitted per se at the time of filing but the genuineness of grounds for divorce are evaluated only after evaluation of evidence and circumstances and sometimes parties settle matters midway without going into trial or waiting for the judge to decide whether the petition is worthy of granting divorce or not. Especially when both parties want a divorce. Settlement terms are worked out with the help of lawyers and court mediator officers or counselors.

Q. What happens to court functioning when there is a lockdown.

Like all other services, even family courts have taken strict precautionary measures and asked litigants to stop crowding at court premises. All daily boards are discharged and longer dates given for follow up. The bar members are working zealously to keep lawyers updated so that they can in turn inform their clients to stay back and even urgent reliefs are not allowed unless it’s a dire situation and so far, there is no such case entertained for urgency in family court. Even filing of new cases have stopped till further notice.

Q. Do clients still call and consult in such situations too?

Divorce is not a solution to household problems. People who end up in court have deeper and serious issues. When one of the spouses hits the roof and reaches a point where all levels of tolerance is destroyed, they have no option but to seek divorce. People are calling and waiting and even pressurising lawyers to use this period to focus on polishing their arguments and preparatory work.

Q. So is Corona scare going to bring families closer or drive the couple apart

Brewing situations and circumstances of divorce are suffered for a long time, before it reaches court. There is a possibility that situation of divorce may rise even in India as China is also witnessing an unprecedented rise of divorce applications since re-opening on 1st March.


Disclaimer: The opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. The facts and opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of AFTERNOON VOICE and AFTERNOON VOICE does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

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