The Czech Ministry of Justice is proposing significant changes to divorce proceedings, aiming to make them simpler and faster. For instance, it will no longer be necessary to state the reasons for the marriage breakdown in court, and the requirement for a six-month period of separate living will also be abolished.
Additionally, divorce and child custody proceedings would be merged into a single process. Furthermore, both spouses would no longer need to be questioned by the courts during the divorce proceedings.
These proposed changes are part of a divorce reform presented by the Ministry of Justice, to be introduced by its Deputy Antonín Stanislav (ODS) at a press conference in the Chamber of Deputies on Monday. The new measures are expected to be incorporated into the Civil Code, with the draft already sent for interdepartmental comments in September.
“The current regulation of divorce and divorce proceedings includes elements considered outdated from an application practice perspective. They complicate and prolong the divorce process for couples for whom divorce is an inevitable solution,” said Stanislav to Právo.
Regarding merging divorce proceedings and arrangements for children into one combined process, he added that this should prevent delays and simplify and calm the divorce process itself. It will still be required for any agreement concerning children to be approved by the court.
“The fact that the content of the agreement is subject to judicial review, which allows the court to verify the truthfulness of the statements, encourages parents to cooperate and seek amicable solutions,” stated the Deputy.
According to the proposed changes, if parents can agree on the terms and all matters concerning their child, there will no longer be a need to appoint a “conflicting guardian,” as required previously. This guardian, who typically represented the child in the proceedings and was usually a representative of OSPOD, would no longer be necessary.
Under the proposed amendment, parents who “know their child best, can best estimate their needs and identify their interests” would represent their child.