A divorce is the legal way of ending your marriage.
In Saint Lucia there is only one ground on which you can obtain a divorce: irretrievable breakdown of the marriage.
The court accepts any of the following 4 scenarios as proof of irretrievable breakdown:
- your spouse has committed adultery and you find it intolerable to remain together;
- your spouse’s behaviour has been such that it is unreasonable for anyone to expect you to continue living together in the face of that conduct;
- your spouse has deserted you for at least 2 years;
- you and your spouse have not lived together for 5 years.
As a general rule, you can only apply for a divorce at least 5 years after you were married.
If you wish to apply before that you will be required to show that you have suffered exceptional hardship or that your spouse has behaved in an exceptionally depraved way towards you.
The first order that you will receive from the court is a provisional order, called a decree nisi. Nisi is a latin word, meaning unless. The decree nisi pronounces that your marriage has ended unless some can show cause within a stated period of time, usually six weeks, why the decree should not be made absolute.
The court can make transfer and settlement of property orders the time when your divorce is granted or any time afterwards. However, if can order the payment of alimony or child support even before a decree of divorce is made.
No, you cannot. Not if your former spouse is alive. No minister of religion can be compelled to remarry you if you are divorced and your former spouse is still alive.
As a rule, you qualify to apply for a divorce in Saint Lucia if your husband is a Saint Lucian citizen or if he regards Saint Lucia as his permanent home.
If your husband is not domiciled in Saint Lucia you may apply if he has deserted you, or he has been deported from Saint Lucia.
If you have been resident in Saint Lucia for 3 years you also qualify even if your husband is not domiciled in Saint Lucia.