Top judge to launch guide for lawyers on Jewish practices and customs

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Top judge to launch guide for lawyers on Jewish practices and customs

Lady Hale will unveil the Board of Deputies’ new booklet later this month, helping lawyers understand a range of sensitive issues in Judaism

Lady Hale
Lady Hale

The UK’s most senior judge is to launch a new guide to help lawyers grappling with cases involving Jewish families to understand Jewish customs.

Lady Hale, president of the Supreme Court, will unveil the Board of Deputies’ new booklet, called: ‘Jewish Family Life and Customs: A Practical Guide,’ on 28 November at the highest court in the land.

The document deals with a range of issues including the role of the rabbi, religious rites and life events, marriage, divorce, cohabitation, domestic and child abuse, conversion to Judaism, death, organ donation, bereavement and mourning.

Among its more detailed elements is an explanation of the Jewish religious divorce, or get. Administered by a Beth Din, the wife is traditionally given a get by her husband when the marriage breaks down, but some men refuse, either through obstinacy or mental impairment, or because he cannot be contacted.

“There is no remedy for any of these situations,” the guide advises. “Therefore it is essential that a wife is advised of these pitfalls well before the civil divorce has been concluded.”

Also attending the launch will be members of the Supreme Court, as well as High Court Judges, Circuit Judges, District Judges, Coroners and MPs.

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