Canada’s high court awarded damages to a Jewish woman whose husband refused her a religious divorce.
The Supreme Court of Canada awarded $47,500 to Stephanie Bruker, 48, saying that her right to remarry and have more children within Judaism was unfairly curtailed by her ex-husband, who refused to grant her a religious divorce for 15 years, according to Canada’s Globe and Mail.
Without a religious divorce, or get, Bruker could not remarry in the eyes of Judaism. Also, any children she would have conceived without a get would have been considered illegitimate under Jewish law.
Justice Rosalie Abella, representing the majority, said courts can referee religious disputes if they “take into account the particular religion, the particular religious right, and the particular personal and public consequences – including the religious consequences – of enforcing that right,” the newspaper reported.
The two dissenting judges said the court had no place in religious disputes.
The couple divorced in 1980 after 11 years of marriage. Husband Jason Marcovitz then refused to honor a prenuptial agreement that included a requirement to provide a get. In 1995, Marcovitz granted the get when Bruker was 46, unmarried and past child-bearing age.