Maklad v. Maklad

The Court, in favor of the Wife, refused to grant comity to a foreign divorce obtained by the Husband in a hearing without proper due process to the Wife.

Maklad v. Maklad, 28 Conn. L. Rptr. 593; 2001 WL 51662 (Conn Super. Ct. Jan. 2, 2001) Court: Superior court of Connecticut

Husband and Wife were married in Egypt. Afterwards, they moved to Connecticut where they resided for 16 years. The couple had four minor children. The couple and their four children are all citizens of both Egypt and the U.S. September 2000, the Husband took the 3 youngest children, then, ages 3, 9, and 11, and took them to Egypt without the Wife’s knowledge. Couple of weeks later, the Husband obtained a certificate of divorce in Egypt. The Wife had no prior notice and was given no opportunity to be heard in Egypt. In October, the Wife filed a claim for divorce in Connecticut. The court granted the Wife’s motion for temporary custody of the four children. The Husband filed for a motion to dismiss arguing:

  1. The court should recognize the Egyptian divorce judgment as a matter of comity, or
  2. The doctrine of practical recognition prevents the Wife from attacking the validity of the Egyptian divorce judgment.

The court disagreed with the Husband on both counts. The court refused to extend comity where the Egyptian divorce decree was obtained by a procedure which denied due process of law to the Wife, and neither the Husband nor the Wife was domiciled in Egypt at the time of the decree. The court also dismissed the Husband’s doctrine of practical recognition argument, and ruled that it was not inequitable to allow the Wife to attack the Egyptian divorce decree. The Husband argued that the Wife took part in a religious divorce in August, 2000, and it would be inequitable to allow the Wife to attack the divorce when she agreed to it before. The court disagreed and made the distinction that it was the Egyptian decree the Wife was attacking and not the religious divorce. The Husband’s motion to dismiss was denied.

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