Before you consider if this Ground of Divorce applies to you, you have to make sure you can divorce in Singapore as there are conditions to be met before you can do so. Find out: Can I Divorce in Singapore?
What is Desertion and what is not?
Commonly known as abandonment, Desertion is when your partner left you with no intention or sign of returning.
Do not mistake Desertion with Separation. Separation is a decision made by both parties agreeing to live separately. Desertion, on the other hand, is a one-sided decision by one party to abandon the other.
Desertion requires living separate lives in different households for at least 2 years. While it is possible the deserting spouse returns for a short period of time before leaving again, it is not Desertion if the total time period of such “reconciliation” is more than 6 months.
You also need to show that this is not a mutual separation. The deserting party must have the intention to abandon the household and marriage. Another way of looking at it is that the separation is against the will of the party being deserted.
Should you wait?
Are you considering if you should wait? Or you are considering other reasons why you may want to hold on? Here are some Considerations over Divorce that may help you to make a decision whether to reconcile or not. You may also wish to speak to counsellors/relationship advisors to get some professional help and advice.
Commence divorce proceedings
If you have checked that you can divorce in Singapore, have proven Desertion and have decided to commence divorce proceedings, you may want to find out how and whether you should DIY or engage a lawyer here: Do I need a lawyer for my Divorce? You may also wish to consult a lawyer directly to obtain professional advice on your case.
If you are married under Muslim law, the above may not apply to you. You can find out more about Divorce under Muslim Law (coming up soon).
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