What is a Final Judgment in Divorce Proceedings?
A Final Judgment in divorce proceedings marks the formal end of your marriage. It concludes the divorce case.
The Final Judgment comes 3 months after you have obtained Interim Judgment (provisional divorce). Your divorce lawyer will have to apply for the Final Judgment for you.
You can remarry
When you have obtained Final Judgment, you are legally entitled to remarry. You will need to produce the Interim Judgment and Final Judgment to prove that your divorce is finalised.
You can sell your property
If there is a court order for the matrimonial property to be sold or transferred, that transaction will usually take place after the Final Judgment. As an illustration, suppose your HDB flat is to be sold and the sale proceeds divided equally. You will be able to sell the HDB flat only after Final Judgment as HDB and the buyer will want to see the Final Judgment. Usually, you are given sufficient time to sell or transfer the property after Final Judgment. If you are unable to sell the matrimonial property within the time specified in the Final Judgment, do not worry. So long as the buyer accepts the situation, the sale will usually go through.
Custody of Children
Once Final Judgment is issued, the court order relating to children custody, care and control and access will also have to be implemented. Suppose that you have joint custody, care and control of your child and weekend access granted to your spouse. After Final Judgment, your child will start living with you, and you will start making day to day decisions for your child. Your spouse will be entitled to the weekend access.
How long does it take to obtain Final Judgment?
In Singapore, as the Singapore courts encourage parties to mediate to resolve their divorce issues (especially with a view to reducing the impact on children), divorce cases are handled quite speedily. The average time taken for final judgment to be granted has been reduced by a quarter from 155.2 days in 2012 to 114.6 in 2016. Hence, on average, your divorce should conclude within a year in Singapore.