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American, foreign divorce laws can strongly contradict

Though the general concept of divorce exists virtually everywhere on Earth, different cultures and countries have versions that are quite different from what we use here in Ohio. For one thing, in many countries women lack the right to ask for divorce in many cases, or walk away with some of the marital property.

Depending on how one international divorce shakes out, the wife could get an equitable share of the marital property -- or be left with nothing but $50, according to

The woman is a native of Pakistan. She and her husband, a Pakistani-American, got married in Pakistan before moving to Texas in 2010. A couple of years later, the husband sent the wife back to Pakistan, telling her it was so that she could obtain U.S. citizenship.

But before the woman could return to the U.S., her husband filed for divorce in Pakistan. The wife is challenging the validity of the divorce in American court, saying the differences between Texas and Pakistani divorce laws are too great for the Texas court to honor and enforce the couple’s divorce.

The wife’s attorney said that honoring the divorce would impoverish his client and let the husband keep virtually all the marital property. But the husband’s attorney said that the divorce proceeding took place in Pakistan, and thus American law should not apply.

Cases of international divorce can be very complicated, because two very different legal systems can be involved. This makes it all the more important that you have an experienced divorce attorney on your side.

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