Divorce slow, pregnant by new man, leaving South Africa

Gozado

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2019
Messages
748
I'm confused.

You describe an uncontested divorce, in which case both parties don't need to attend court proceedings in order for the settlement to be made an order of the court and for the decree of divorce to be issued.

You're not telling us something.
Oh, you're right, I'm absolutely sure that I'm not telling it all, because I don't have the facts, fully, either. And I, too, am confused. I am just trying to help calm down several people, in this, who don't understand what to do next, and don't have the nerves to be asking all these questions and try to figure it out. The input, here in this thread, helps me to prepare the questions to ask them, or a To Do list for them, etc. They're getting on with the many other parts of the story, knowing that I'm here trying to work it out.

Yes, the divorce in uncontested.
Yes, they have a signed document saying that they'll each just keep what little they have, and neither owe each other any settlement or maintenace.

However, when she (as the Defendent) went to Court when she was told to do, her husband (as Plaintiff) did not attend. They were told they would be given a second date. Then Covid came and caused delays, and a few months ago they were given that second date. Once again, she attended, and once again he was not there. The judge said that he cannot hear her, at all, in the absence of the Plaintiff, who always has to be present at a hearing. She was told to start the process anew, as Plaintiff, so that she can then guarantee that she be present at the next hearing.
 

Doodler

Active Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2011
Messages
86
I'm sorry, I'm not sure what that means. Could you please dumb that down a bit, for me? Do you mean that the woman could just leave, and let the Attorney get on with it. in her absence? I had understood that the Plaintiff must, must, must be present.
There must be evidence in front of the court in order to grant the prayers in the action being sought.

Usually this would mean that the Plaintiff has to appear before the court in person, and in the witness box to give such evidence under oath that he/she wants to be divorced and that the matter is not contested by the Defendant.

However in certain instances the court can make allowance for a divorce under oath in an affidavit confirming everything that would testified had the Plaintiff been in court personally.

You might have problems with this in Magistrate's courts as they are "creatures of statue", but I have seen this done in the South Gauteng High Court on many occasions. It's also the reason why I advise people to rather divorce in the High Court as they are not as limited in their powers as the Magistrates Courts.
 

pinball wizard

Honorary Master
Joined
Feb 9, 2010
Messages
27,240
Oh, you're right, I'm absolutely sure that I'm not telling it all, because I don't have the facts, fully, either. I am just trying to help calm down several people, in this, who don't understand what to do next, and don't have the nerves to be asking all these questions and try to figure it out. The input, here in this thread, helps me to prepare the questions to ask them, or a To Do list for them, etc. They're getting on with the many other parts of the story, knowing that I'm here trying to work it out.

Yes, the divorce in uncontested.
Yes, they have a signed document saying that they'll each just keep what little they have, and neither owe each other any settlement or maintenace.

However, when she (as the Defendent) went to Court when she was told to do, her husband (as Plaintiff) did not attend. They were told they would be given a second date. Then Covid came and caused delays, and a few months ago they were given that second date. Once again, she attended, and once again he was not there. The judge said that he cannot hear her, at all, in the absence of the Plaintiff, who always has to be present at a hearing. She was told to start the process anew, as Plaintiff, so that she can then guarantee that she be present at the next hearing.
Oh, yeah, that's right then. The person who institutes the proceedings must be there. (Plaintiff).

She should do that then if she can get the fella to sign the necessary.
 

Gozado

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2019
Messages
748
You might have problems with this in Magistrate's courts as they are "creatures of statue", but I have seen this done in the South Gauteng High Court on many occasions. It's also the reason why I advise people to rather divorce in the High Court as they are not as limited in their powers as the Magistrates Courts.
Thank you very much for your explanation. Can she simply choose whether she's going through the High Court rather than the Magistrate's Court? What are the criteria, who decides, advantages (clearly, as you've just described) or disadvantages of going to the High Court (e.g. possible waiting period)?
 

Doodler

Active Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2011
Messages
86
Thank you very much for your explanation. Can she simply choose whether she's going through the High Court rather than the Magistrate's Court? What are the criteria, who decides, advantages (clearly, as you've just described) or disadvantages of going to the High Court (e.g. possible waiting period)?
Yes you can choose.

Usually attorneys choose to use an advocate in the High Court to lead evidence on the day of the hearing, which can add to the costs of the matter.

The High Court also started implementing a online system for covid, which in my experience is a total sh*t show and can cause longer delays. Also matters are currently heard on Zoom, so maybe she can even attend on the day from whichever country thinking about it…

For a very easy unopposed divorce with a settlement agreement, it should cost about R3 - 4k excluding disbursements sheriff, travel and advocate, vat

Baby Junior advocate about R1k - R1.5k ex vat
 
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