I am thinking of divorcing my wife. We are Jewish with young children. What is the best way for me to go about this to avoid paying high maintenance and avoiding a rougher deal financially regarding our property ?
By: דיאנה שאלתיאל•Published on: 23 June, 2022
From a man’s viewpoint it is best to file for divorce at the rabbinical court. Custody is automatically tied to the plea, but a wife’s maintenance is only included if it is genuinely and correctly bound according to strict criteria. To include property the divorce plea must be both explicit and detailed about this. Any property not specifically mentioned will not be included in the plea.
If, however, the wife pre-empts the issue and files for child custody and maintenance for herself and the children and even takes certain steps regarding property at the family court, then the husband will be prevented from filing for these at the rabbinical court, which will then only have jurisdiction regarding the divorce.
As a rule, it is in the husband’s interests for jurisdiction for proceedings regarding maintenance and property to be at the rabbinical court, while it is in the wife’s interests for t hem to be at the family court.