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Wed April 8, 2009
Islamic divorce rite rejected by MI court
By Rick Pluta, Michigan Public Radio Network
East Lansing, MI – East Lansing, MI (MPRN) - The Michigan Court of Appeals says the state cannot accept a Muslim ritual as a legal divorce.
The couple this case was married in India, but lived in Michigan when the marriage broke up.
Last year, the husband got a divorce in India in a ceremony that included repeating "I divorce thee" three times.
India recognizes the Muslim tradition as a legal way to end a marriage.
But the state Court of Appeals says Michigan does not.
The court says the ceremony deprived the wife of her due process rights because she had no advance notice, and she had no an attorney present.
The court also said Michigan's divorce laws differ significantly from Muslim traditions recognized in India regarding dividing assets and child support.
The full faith and credit clause of the U-S Constitution requires states to recognize most marriages and divorces performed in other states.
But that does not apply to other countries