Recognition And Enforcement Of Divorce Decrees In Turkey

The divorce cases including  foreign elements are very important due to concerning  international jurisdiction, conflict of laws and the recognition and enforcement of court decisions. The Turkish Courts’ competence as an international jurisdiction arising from articles 40 and 41 of International Private and Procedure Law (IPPL). Articles concerned with Article 168 of Turkish Civil Code. According to the provision, competent court for divorce is the court of the place where one of spouses  or both resides together for last 6 months prior to the divorce case.

Article 50 of IPPL, sets forth that foreign court judgement shall be subject to the enforcement decision of  Turkish courts in order to be enforceable in Turkey. In an attempt  to the enforceability, such decisions should have definitive as per the legislation in the country they have rendered.

Article 51 of IPPL, the Courts of First Instance are charged with enforcement decisions. Furthermore, with respect to the family matters, Family Courts shall be competent as per the Law on the Establisment, Functions and Proceedings of the Family Courts numbered 4787.

Article 52 of IPPL, states that anyone with a legal interest may request enforcement by a petition. The petition shall contain;

– The names, surnames and addresses of the parties and if any, their legal representatives,

– The court of the state that has rendered the decree subject to enforcement and the name of the court, the date number of the decree and a summary of the judgement,

– If partial enforcement is sould, an indication as the which part of the decree contitutes of the subject of the request.

Article 53 of IPPL, further sets out the document to be attached to the petition. These documents are as follows;

– The original copy of the court decree duly upheld by the authorities of the foreign states or the decree certified by that organ of jurisdiction and a certified translation thereof,

– A document or written statement from the authorities of the state which officially confirms that the court decree is definitive and a certified translation thereof.

Article 54 of IPPL sets out the conditions of enforcement:

– Existance of an agreement on a reciprocal basis or a provision of law or de facto practise,

– The judgement must have been rendered by a competent court on matters not within the exclusive juricdiction of the Turkish courts,

– The court decree should not be distinctly contrary to public order,

– The all right of defence should have been complied with.

In case of a foreign court delivered a judgement about  a divorce in any country, it will not been valid in Turkey unless it is  recognized in Turkish Courts. In other words, the divorced person is still deemed married until the Recognition And Enforcement Of Divorce Decree in Turkey. Contrary to populer belief, the recognition and enforcement case is not a divorce action. It is only a supply  that a court judgement which is given by the foreign court will be recognized in Turkey and followed enforced after recognition for divorce actions.

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