Monday, April 9, 2012

Minchas Yitzchok: Law requiring Get if civil divorce

This teshuva also would invalidate direct pressure to give a get by public humilation. The only pressure permitted is that which comes from something else which is alleviated by the giving of the get. If the sole reason for the pressure is to force the giving of a get - he says it invalidates the get according to all opinions.

Minchas Yitzchok(8:137): Question: There are frum people who are influential in the legislature who want a law passed that when a husband divorces his wife in secular court – that he would then be obligated to give a get in beis din. This suggested legislation is being done to benefit Jewish women so that their spiteful husbands should not be able to make them agunas. However you are concerned that doing so would invalidate the get as a get coerced by non‑Jews (get me’usa). In particular in cases where the halacha does not require that the husband gives a get. You also want to know if it is considered an illegal coerced get if it is given because the secular judge will require the husband pay additional money until he gives the get. Answer: This that the secular judge will keep adding the requirement to pay continually more money until the get is given – this causes the concern for a coerced get (me’usa) according to all opinion as is stated in Shulchan Aruch (E.H. 134:4) in the Rema and commentaries. Look at Toras Gittin and the views expressed in Pischei Teshuva. I have seen in Minchas Meishiv (14) that he has searched for solutions in this type of case. In addition to the fact that his solutions are very complicated both in terms of halacha and in carrying them out – he ends up without a clear answer. The only possible solution in my opinion is to try and establish that the law does not explicitly require that a get be given. Rather it should be done indirectly by saying that as long as there is no valid divorce in beis din that there is no valid divorce in secular court. If done in this way, there is no problem of a get me’usa. This would be exactly equivalent to a husband giving his wife a divorce because he wants to marry another woman. Because of the Cherem of Rabbeinu Gershom it is prohibited to be married to two women so he must divorce his first wife. The giving of a get to avoid the prohibition of Rabbeinu Gershom does not constitute a get me’usa. That is because he has the option not to divorce his first wife and consequently he would not marry anyone else. And even if we would not be concerned for the Decree of Rabbeinu Gershom but we are giving the get because of secular law which prevents marrying anyone else until the first wife is divorced – it would still be valid. See Aruch HaShulchan (E.H. 134:22), “ Even if he loves his wife but she hates him and torments him until he gives her a get – since the get itself is given of his free‑will and the pressure on him comes from a different direction – it is considered that he pressured himself. If you don’t understand it in this manner then the majority of gittin would be considered coerced and be invalid. That is because when a person gets divorced it is typical that there are various causes that he feels that he must get divorced. So therefore when the pressure is not on the giving of the get itself but from another source - it is valid.”

1 comment :

  1. The problem I have with this is that women use the court to get advantage over their husbands. A large proportion of women that divorce their husbands are motivated by a desire to hurt their husbands in any way possible. This includes constant brain washing daily of the children how their father is a "child abuser" or what every term is the most damaging in the culture at the time. (This becomes the religion of the children) Most women do whatever they can to destroy their x husbands even at the expense of the good of their children. This is not in accord with the Torah but they do this because they state gives them the power to do this. This is why the Torah limits the power of women to destroy their children and their husbands. and this is the reason why the Torah says a husband gives a get when and if he wants to.


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