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Women’s Equal Rights Law, 5711-1951

No. 69

WOMEN’S EQUAL RIGHTS LAW, 5711—1951*

1.    A man and a woman shall have equal status with regard to any
legal proceeding; any provision of law which discriminates, with regard
to any legal proceeding, against women as women, shall be of no effect.

2.    A married woman shall be fully competent to own and deal with
property as if she were unmarried; her rights in property acquired before
her marriage shall not be affected by her marriage.

3.    (a) Both parents are the natural guardians of their children ; where
one parent dies, the survivor shall be the natural guardian.

(b) The provisions of subsection (a) shall not derogate from the
power of a competent court or tribunal to deal with matters of guardian-
ship over the persons or property of children with the interest of the
children as the sole consideration.

4.      (a) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law, rights
in an estate, being mulk land or movable property, shall be determined
in accordance with the provisions of the Second Schedule to the Succes-
sion Ordinance5.

(b)   The provisions of subsection (a) shall apply to any estate the
order for the distribution of which is made after the coming into force
of this Law, even if the deceased died before such coming into force.

(c)   The provisions of subsection (a) do not apply to such items of
an estate as are disposed of by will.

1   P.G. No. 1232 of the 24th December, 1942, Suppl. II, p.1945 (English Edition).

2   P.G. No. 1383 of the 8th January, 1945, Suppl. II, p. 17 (English Edition).

3   P.G. No.1359 of the 14th September, 1944, Suppl. II, p. 939 (English Edition).

*  P.G. No. 1138 of the 6th November, 1941, Suppl. II, p. 1677 (English Edition).

*   Passed by the Knesset on the 13th Tamuz, 5711 (17th July, 1951) and publish-
ed in Sefer Ha-Chukkim No.82 of the 22nd Tamuz, 5711 (26th July, 1951),
p. 248; the Bill and an Explanatory Note were published in Hatza’ot Click
No. 75 of the 3rd Iyar, 5711 (9th May, 1951), p. 190.

5 Laws of Pedestine vol. II, cap. 135, p. 1378 (English Edition).

171

5.      This Law shall not affect any legal prohibition or permission relat-
ing to marriage or divorce.

6.      This Law shall not derogate from any provision of law protecting
women as women.

7.    All courts shall act in accordance with this Law; a tribunal com-
petent to deal with matters of personal status shall likewise act in ac-
cordance therewith, unless all the parties are eighteen years of age or
over and have consented before the tribunal, of their own free will, to
have their case tried according to the laws of their community.

The Criminal Code Ordinance, 19361, shall be amended as follows:

(a)   Paragraph (c) of the proviso to section 181 is repealed;

(b)   the following section shall be inserted after section 181:

181 A. Where the husband dissolves the marriage
against the will of the wife without a judgment of
a competent court or tribunal ordering the wife to
dissolve the marriage, the husband is guilty of a
felony and shall be liable to imprisonment for a
term not exceeding five years.”.

9. The Minister of Justice is charged with the implementation of this
Law.

DAVID BEN-GURION                           PINCHAS ROSEN

Prime Minister

CHAIM WEIZMANN

President of the State

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