Convert divorce case in to mutual consent divorce
Can court convert the divorce case filed under section 13 of Hindu Marriage Act into the Divorce of Mutual Consent under section 13B of the same Act?
Section 13 of the Hindu Marriage Act 1955, provides grounds for divorce. All the grounds mentioned in this section are based
Consent is the only ground of divorce under section 13-B therefore,
Under section 13-B (2) the parties are required to make a joint motion not earlier than six months after the date of presentation of the petition and not later than 18 months after the said date. This motion enables the court to proceed with the case in order to satisfy itself about the genuineness of the averments in the petition and also to find out whether the consent was not obtained by force, fraud or undue influence.
In Sureshta Devi v. Om Prakash, (1991) 2 SCC 25; If one of the parties at that stage says that “I have withdrawn my consent”, or “I am not a willing party to the divorce”, the court cannot pass a decree of divorce by mutual consent.
In mutual consent divorce the consent may be withdrawn by any party at any time or stage of the proceeding but before passing of the decree. Mutual consent should continue till the divorce decree is passed. It is a positive requirement for the court to pass a decree of divorce.
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