2 Tel Aviv U. Stud. L. 113 (1976)
The Spouses (Property Relations) Law, 5733-1973, in Light of Religious Divorce in Israel

handle is hein.journals/telavusl2 and id is 113 raw text is: THE SPOUSES (PROPERTY RELATIONS) LAW, 5733-1973,
IN LIGHT OF RELIGIOUS DIVORCE IN ISRAEL
By Menashe Shava *
A. THE LAW APPLICABLE TO MATTERS OF MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE
One of the basic principles of family law in Israel is that matters of personal
status1 as defined in Article 51 of the Palestine Order-in-Council 1922 are
(in the absence of other provisions under the civil territorial law regulating
the matter) determined by the personal law        applicable.2   In relation to local
citizens, this is the law of their religion.3
The exclusive jurisdiction in matters of marriage and divorce 4 is vested
* Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Law, Tel Aviv University.
i. The following are matters of personal status: Suits regarding marriage or divorce,
alimony, maintenance, guardianship, legitimation and adoption of minors, inhibition from
dealing with property of persons who are legally incompetent, successions, wills and legacies
and the administration of the property of absent persons.
Today this list has been reduced with the following matters deleted: adoption of minors
and successions, wills and legacies.  See sec. 34 of the Adoption of Children Law, 572o-
I96O, S.H. 5720, 78; 14 L.S.I. 93 and sec. I56(b)(i) of the Succession Law, 5725-1965, SH.
5725, 63; I9 L.S.I. 58.
2. See Article 47 of the Palestine Order-in-Council 1922, III Laws of Palestine 2569.
3. See, for example, C.A. 26/51 Kotik v. Wolfson, 5 P.D. 1341, 1345. With regard to
foreigners the personal law shall be the law of the country of their nationality. See Article
64(i), Palestine Order-in-Council 1922.
4. The case-law has given a broad interpretation to the expression matters of marriage
as it appears in Article 5(i) of the Palestine Order-in-Council, I922 and in sec. i of the
Rabbinical Courts Jurisdiction (Marriage and Divorce) Law, 5713-1953, S.H. 5713, 165;
7 L.S.I. i39. This interpretation embraces the total range of the rights and obligations arising
out of the marital status including those that are financial. (See Sp.C. 1/50 Sidis v. Chief
Execution Officer, 8 P.D. iozo at 03i-i032; C.A. 8/59 Goldman v. Goldman, 23 P.D.
io85 at io9o-io9.) Accordingly, the expression matters of marriage is not confined to
claims concerning the validity of a marriage or relating to the capacity to marry see, for
example, H.C. 359/66 Gityah v. Chief Rabbinate, 22(2) P.D. 290, 294), or to the voidability
of a marriage (see, for example, H.C. 323/73 Goldberg v. The Rabbinical Court, 28(1) P.D.
563, 565). But it includes also claims concerning the personal rights and obligations arising
out of the marital status (see, for example, H.C. 105/45 Goldenberg v. Chief Execution
Officer, [2946] A.L.R. 546 at 549-550) and all monetary claims arising out of the marital
status.. See E. Schoenbaum, Rabbinic Jurisdiction in Marriage and Divorce as Reflected in
the Decisions of the Israeli Courts, 4 Dine Israel (1973) 143.
113

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