Divorce proceedings fall under the family law section of the judicial system here in South Africa, and in order to proceed with a legitimate divorce, all of the legal requirements need to be met before it can be granted by either a high court or a family court that has jurisdiction over the proceedings. That basically means that you have to apply for the divorce at a court that is located in your area.
The legal system in South Africa actually provides people with the opportunity to undergo a divorce from their spouse in a cost effective way by going to the department of justice directly. Unfortunately, the process is a lot slower and you often have to rely on your own ability to get things done properly. At least if you have an attorney present they can use their knowledge of the legal system to help establish grounds for divorce and help get it granted.
The South African Divorce Act
The Divorce Act is a part of legislation that governs the rules and regulations around divorce and on what grounds one may be granted to the parties involved. There are two categories where a judge will allow it and they are when the parties involved can prove that the marriage is irrecoverable or based on mental illness. The second one may sound a bit odd, but poor mental health is often a serious issue for the healthy partner and a court can legally grant the divorce if the person cannot stay in that kind relationship anymore.
A marriage is defined as irrecoverable when both parties can no longer make amends and get the marriage back on track. When one partner has leaves the marriage and the two of them no longer live together because they no longer want to be together, that would be considered grounds for divorce. The same can be said for abusive marriages and infidelity.
Following the Whole Process
The whole divorce process requires some careful thought and preparation if you are going to come out of it okay at the other end. If you have children, you will need to decide who gets custody of the kids as well as deciding what the maintenance agreement is going to be. The payments need to be stipulated and printed out on paper where both parties can sign and agree to terms.
The division of property is usually based on the type of marriage, namely community of property or pre-nuptial agreement. If you are married in community of property the division has to equal and fair, and only in certain instances will the court allow for preference on one or two items. The pre-nuptial agreement basically gets signed before the two parties get married, and they get to stipulate exactly who gets what and how it will get split up in the event that they do decide get divorced.
Getting legal assistance for divorces in South Africa would be a sensible thing to do, because you get access to knowledgeable attorneys that can assist you get through the whole process as quickly and painlessly as possible.