UK Supreme Court Rules Unhappy Wife Must Stay Married

Hugh and Tini Owens (Photo credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire)

A 68-year-old woman in Worcestershire, England, who tried to end her 40-year-old marriage to her 80-year-old husband because she is unhappy, must now stay married after the U.K.’s highest court rejected her appeal because her husband refuses to split.

“The appeal of Mrs. Owens must be dismissed. She must remain married to Mr. Owens for the time being,” a Supreme Court judge, Lord Wilson, said in the majority ruling Wednesday, according to the Guardian. “Parliament may wish to consider whether to replace a law which denies to Mrs. Owens any present entitlement to a divorce in the above circumstances.”

The decision, according to the BBC, means that the now “devastated” Tini Owens “cannot move forward with her life” and will have to wait until 2020 to get a divorce when she meets a five-year separation requirement.

Under laws in England and Wales, a divorce can only be granted if there is adultery, unreasonable behavior or desertion. It can also be granted if couples have lived apart for more than two years and they both agree to the divorce. If they can’t agree to the divorce, they must live apart for at least five years before it is granted.

“Hugh Owens takes no pleasure from this process which has impacted on the private family life of him and his wife,” her husband’s solicitors said in a statement.

They argued that he should not be “unfairly criticized for attempting to save his marriage.”

His wife had alleged that their marriage had broken down irretrievably and that he had behaved in such a way that she could not reasonably be expected to live with him.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Leonardo Blair