Granted Divorce 37 Years After Leaving Her Husband - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Granted Divorce 37 Years After Leaving Her Husband

Published October 30, 2013

A woman was granted a divorce in Reykjavík district court on Tuesday, 37 years after she last heard from her husband.

The couple were married in London in June 1975 but a year later they separated and the woman moved to Iceland on her own, RÚV reports.

She didn’t have any contact with her husband since.

The woman initially sought the assistance of a priest in 1986, who issued a license for her to be granted divorce, but she didn’t take the matter further at the time.

Last year, the woman sought legal divorce for the first time but because she misspelled the man’s name, the case was dismissed.
After that, the man’s acting representative tried to track him down.

Assistance was required from the Red Cross and the Salvation Army in London and the British Embassy to Iceland, in search of the man, but to no avail.

The Salvation Army claimed that its role did not involve finding missing spouses and all other attempts to find the husband proved unsuccessful.

Finally, district court ruled that the woman should be granted divorce on grounds of the 37th paragraph of Icelandic marriage laws: that when couples have been separated due to estrangement for at least two years, either one of them can be granted a divorce.


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