We’ve blogged about online legal translations, legal translation and court interpretation services in international divorces. Recently, a Virginia court refused to grant a no-fault divorce – which is typically based on living separate and apart for one year – in a case where the separation was found to have been caused by the husband’s ‘clearly wrongful’ action of refusing to renew his wife’s visa. As a result, she could not enter the country, and hence the separation.
However, the judge based his decision not on a concern for the lack of separation but on the fact that the wife was unable to enter the country to litigate such issues as property division and support. According to the ruling, ‘a party must come with clean hands and that party must remain free of any inequitable or wrongful conduct with respect to the transaction or subject matter sued on’.
This becomes more interesting when a foreign spouse is prevented from entering properly into a divorce proceeding because of foreign language issues and a lack of support from the spouse. When representing the spouse who is unable to enter the country, it is likely that foreign language translations and foreign language interpretations will be required.