In Qatar, as in any other country, many couples file for divorce for various reasons. It can happen to Muslims as well as non-Muslim foreigners. In such a case, you must know the Steps to File for Divorce in Qatar.

First, if you are a foreigner living in Qatar, you should know that filing for a divorce is difficult. It isn’t easy to navigate Qatar and the local Sharia court system. But you don’t have to worry about filing a divorce case in Qatar. Here we provide you with a clear guide.

Divorce in Qatar

Divorce is more frequent in Qatar. But it still needs to be expected according to the country’s traditions. However, the divorce rate in Qatar is meager compared to other countries. According to the survey reports, the divorce rate in 2017 was 0.4 per 1000 people. But by 2023, the divorce rate has increased by 70% in the last 15 years.

From the study reports in Qatar, it was clear that in the first five years after marriage, divorce occurred because many women have more participation in workplaces and have to lead their lives through family intervention. 

Divorce can also be granted to any couple after proof of residence in Qatar. Also, if an expatriate couple divorces in Qatar, the laws of the husband’s home country can be applied. Also, the current divorce process in Qatar differs for Muslim and non-Muslim couples. Here we emphasize how to get a divorce in the Qatari judicial system.

How to get divorced in Qatar

Steps to Filing for Divorce in Qatar There are things you should consider first. Let us discuss it.

1. Know the law that governs your divorce.

First, before you file for divorce in Qatar, find out which law will govern your divorce. If you are a foreigner, you can divorce under Qatari law or according to the direction of your husband’s home country. For most ex-pts, mutual consent is the easiest way to get a divorce in Qatar. 

In such cases, lawyers will accurately draft an agreement that includes the grounds for divorce, custody, and financial directives. Opting for a direct divorce can take up to 4 months.

2. File directly with the court for an uncontested divorce.

The judge will set up a reconciliation when you file for divorce directly with the court. But if that doesn’t work, it will require the party seeking divorce to certify their grounds for divorce. After the relevant evidence convinces the judge, they grant the divorce.

3. Application for a divorce certificate

It is the last step you will get in Steps to Filing for Divorce in Qatar. After your divorce is granted, you should go to the court clerk with all your relevant documents. There you can apply for a divorce certificate. You go to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and your local embassy to confirm it later.

Things you should consider when getting a divorce in Qatar

Steps to Filing for Divorce in Qatar There are some unique things that you should consider. Let us see them one by one.

Division of property

Focus on dividing your assets before filing a divorce case in Qatar. You can share the joint investments in the name of both spouses as per contributions. Also, the support and properties of both parties in their terms can be retained. Also, Qatari courts do not have jurisdiction over foreign assets. Because of this, you should also know that any assets held abroad are subject to different laws.

Custody of children

Sharia child law makes decisions regarding child custody. In a divorce in Qatar, mothers get custody of the children while fathers retain control. The child grows up with the mother until he reaches the proper age, and the father must bear his financial responsibilities.

 There are cases where the custody of the child the mother receives in case of divorce. That is, if the mother is not Muslim or if she remarries, it is an example.

Life support

When considering a divorce in Qatar, you should also consider maintenance. That is, after the end of a marriage, a woman has the right to receive financial assistance for three months. That maintenance includes living expenses, medical care, education, and child-rearing. Also, if the woman remarries, the husband no longer has to pay maintenance expenses.

Divorce options

You can also choose several divorce options when thinking about Steps to Filing for Divorce in Qatar. Meanwhile, annulment is one of the main divorce options in Qatar. You can get an abrogate instead of a divorce. You can do that by contacting your embassy and religious representatives.

Among the divorce options in Qatar, the other method is divorce mediation. It is a faster and more cost-effective process than a traditional court-ordered divorce. Also, spouses may end up with better settlements through this method.

Cost of Divorce in Qatar

You will have to pay court and lawyer fees if you divorce in Qatar. It may vary depending on the contentiousness of the divorce and the time taken to process it. It may cost you QAR 20 to apply for a divorce certificate after it is finalized. You may find it easier to file a divorce in your home country for uncontested divorces, which in most cases are settled amicably.

Legal Grounds for Divorce in Qatar

When thinking about the Steps to Filing for Divorce in Qatar, you will have to understand whether you can legally explain your reason. As in other countries, laws, adultery, and abuse can be considered the main reasons. 

Also, according to the Family Law No. 22 of 2006, desertion and imprisonment are among the main reasons for divorce. Abandonment is absence from the marital home. Incarceration means the wife can file for divorce if the husband goes to jail at some point during the marriage. Also, it is given after about one year of imprisonment.

Frequently asked questions 

Q. Where can I file a divorce in Qatar?

Both Muslim and non-Muslim foreigners can obtain a divorce through Qatari courts. But the applicable laws may be slightly different. Divorce for Muslim expatriates is governed by Qatar Family Law 22 of 2006.

Q. Can I file for divorce without cause?

A divorce case can be filed on that ground if one person leaves the other without any reasonable reason. But the other person must have a clear intention to leave their spouse, which must be proved by evidence.

Q. When does it take to get a divorce?

If both parties agree, it can be completed within 6 to 7 months of filing the case. But if the husband does not agree, there are ways to get him to agree with you under pressure. But for a contested divorce, it takes three years for a solution.

Q. Who pays for the divorce?

The petitioner is responsible for preparing the divorce documents, covering costs, obtaining legal advice, and paying court fees. Also, the respondent is only responsible for protecting the legal fees.

Final thoughts

Filing a divorce in Qatar is often the same as in other countries. There are several clear legal reasons for this, and if you file for divorce, you should do so with clear evidence. For that, reasonable expenses must be paid, and appropriate legal steps should be followed. We hope you got the right idea through our guide on Steps to Filing for Divorce in Qatar.