Saudi Arabia grants divorced women right to child custody
Riyadh - The move comes as part of the efforts to empower Saudi women under the Kingdom's Vision 2030 reform initiative.
No more filing of lawsuits to win child custody rights for divorced women in Saudi Arabia.
In a landmark decision, divorced mothers have been allowed to retain the custody of their children provided there are no disputes between the parents. Mothers can now submit a request to the relevant court to retain or win the custody of their children.
The mothers can carry out the formalities for child custody at government offices, embassies, education offices and institutions.
Besides, they can also apply for and collect her children's passports, as well as collect all child support and maintenance from government and civil entities. However, she would not be able to travel with her children outside the country without a judge's permission.
Sheikh Walid Al-Samaani, Minister of Justice and President of the Higher Council of the Judiciary, has sent circulars to the courts explaining the formalities to implement the rule.
"The Higher Council of the Judiciary has studied the matter and decided that a mother may submit a probate application to the competent court for certifying her custody of her children, provided she signs an acknowledgement of no existing disputes," the statement read.
"For granting custody to a mother, the judicial panel considers her capacity for custody and then determines her application in accordance with Shariah and legal requirements, without the need for initiating a lawsuit, as is the case with all probate certifications indicated in Chapter 13 of the Law of Civil Procedure."
The move comes as part of the efforts to empower Saudi women under the Kingdom's Vision 2030 reform initiative.