This query is not relating to my situation but I have been asked to find out something about Divorce.
A friend of mine was married in the UK 20 yrs ago but moved to Tenerife with her husband and children and are now official residents there and has been for 10 years. She wants to divorce her husband but wonders if Spanish Law or the British Law would be needed as it is very different - it will be on the grounds of adultery.
I would have thought that adultary would be out of scope becuase of the time elapsed. Like 10 years. I would have thought 5 years sep would be a more likely reason. If the respondant lives in the UK then it will be dealt with here but thats just my opinion. I could be wrong. Hopefully somebody knows a bit more will post. There is a rather snazzy divorce process at the top of the page. Have a butchers. Chris.
This is a really interesting one. You are asking two questions in effect.
1. Which country's Courts have jurisdiction? and
2. On what basis can the divorce proceed?
At first sight the Spanish Courts must have jurisdiction because the Canaries are part of Spain. But a UK Court can also have jurisdiction if both parties are "domiciled" in UK. "Domicile" is a funny word, it can have various meanings.
Your domicile of origin is the country you were born in and are a citizen of. If both are expat Brits then they are "habitually resident" in Spain, but still are domiciled in UK because they are British born and bred. If so, the English Courts have jurisdiction.
One can have domicile of dependency or domicile of choice also. I don't want to muddy the waters by going there.
The Spanish Courts can have jurisdiction too, because they both live there. They tend to be less helpful to the woman, 'nuff said.
As to grounds for divorce, adultery is a ground in both jurisdictions. But in an English Court, if the innocent party continues to live with the other "as man & wife" (i.e. they continue to have sex) for a total period of 6 months or more, then the adultery is deemed to have been "condoned" and you can't rely on the adultery any more. Other grounds may still be available to prove the "irretrievable breakdown" of course, such as "unreasonable behaviour".
Sorry, I know nothing about how the Spanish conduct divorce proceeding, either legally or procedurally, so can't help there. But the English Courts certainly seem open to them if they wish. It's a question of who gets to Court first, in which country - a "jurisdiction" race. Hope this helps.