HC Deb 06 July 1953 vol 517 cc856-7
44. Mrs. Corbet

asked the Attorney-General if he will, in the near future, introduce legislation to amend the law with regard to the domicile of married women, so as to remove the disabilities suffered by them under the present law, particularly as to status, matrimonial rights and the right to, and devolution of, their property.

The Attorney-General (Sir Lionel Heald)

Certain aspects of the law relating to the domicile of married women are now being considered by the Royal Commission on Marriage and Divorce and the law relating to domicile generally is being considered by the Standing Committee on Private International Law, appointed by my noble Friend the Lord Chancellor. When the recommendations of these bodies have been received the question of legislation will be considered.

Mrs. Corbet

Does not the hon. and learned Gentleman appreciate that there is very considerable hardship and injustice and uncertainty attaching to the law relating to domicile? Is he not of the opinion now that the time has come for more urgent action, if possible along the lines he suggested?

The Attorney-General

I think that these are precisely matters under consideration by the two bodies, and I think it would be very much better to wait and see what they say. I do not think there is any reason to suppose that they will be long.

Miss Ward

Does my hon. and learned Friend think that the committees will have reported in time to include the necessary legislation in next Session's programme?

The Attorney-General

We can all hope, but we cannot do any more than that.