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Russian maintenance order

The ruling of Russian Court dated 2007 partially satisfied Marina Sorokina’s claim for spousal support against her husband Vitaly Sorokin.

According to Art. 89 of the Family Code of the Russian Federation spouses shall support each other financially. According to Art. 90 of the Family Code of the Russian Federation a disabled low-income ex-spouse who’s become disabled prior to the marriage dissolution or within a year after the marriage dissolution is entitled to claim spousal support in a judicial proceeding.

The ruling entered into force on 2008 by decision of the Judicial Division for Civil Cases of Regional Court.

The cassational ruling says that Marina Sorokina became handicapped on Decemner 11, 1997. The English version of the cassational ruling of Regional Court was falsified and a different date, December 11, 2007, was indicated in the translation of the cassational ruling into English which is 10 years later!

The materials of the case prove that Sorokin left the USA in August 1995. If his wife became handicapped on October 1997 his departure would have meant that he left his wife when she was helpless and had no means of subsistence and in this case he would have had to support her in the future.

But we see that the official information was falsified, which can be easily proved.

The family relationship between the parties was terminated in October 1997, which was confirmed by both parties in the court session.

The parties didn’t dispute termination of the family relationship in 1997. Thus, Sorokina’s disease and following disability in 2007 happened after termination of the family relationship when parties lived separately in different countries, they didn’t communicate with each other and didn’t know each other’s addresses. Therefore, the husband is not responsible for his wife’s disability that happened 10 years after termination of the family relationship. Moreover, neither the disability onset date nor the disability itself was confirmed by authorized US doctors.

Furthermore, according to Sorokina’s claim she has no other relatives who can support her. It is disproved by the Sworn Financial Statement signed by Marina Sorokina. The Sworn Financial Statement says that Marina Sorokina has debt liabilities to her daughter Olesya Sorokina amounting to $5,500.

This argument was not verified by the Russian Court though it was established that Olesya Sorokina lived and worked in the USA. This material fact is proved by the attached financial document. According to the laws of the Russian Federation (Art. 87, 88 of the Family Code of the Russian Federation) employable full age children shall support their disabled low-income parents and shall take care of them. In the absence of full age children’s care about their disabled parents and under other exceptional circumstances (a grave illness or a permanent injury of a parent, nursing care expenses, etc.) the full age children may be obliged by the court to share additional expenses related to such circumstances.

Such circumstances were not verified by the court and the full age daughter of Marina Sorokina and Vitaly Sorokin, who shall support her disabled mother pursuant to the laws, didn’t participate in the court proceedings and her obligation to support her mother was imposed on Marina Sorokina’s ex-husband, the relationship with whom was terminated more than 10 years ago and who is not and cannot be responsible for the condition of his ex-wife’s health 10 years after termination of their relationship.

I am of the opinion that besides the abovementioned the American Court shall not enforce the ruling of the Russian Court due to the following:

A. United States and Russia do not have a reciprocity agreement.

B. The Russian laws or procedures for issuance of such orders are not substantially similar to American Laws.

C. Russia and the USA have different procedures for issuing and enforcing alimony maintenance orders.

In my professional opinion, Marina Sorokina shall initiate an independent action (if she is entitled to do it) if she wants to obtain support from her ex-husband. Under the abovementioned circumstances the ruling of the Russian Court shall not be the basis for the recovery of support in the USA.

Karina Duvall
Articles and consultations authored by attorney reflect the state of law as of the date of their writing. The laws change daily. Users of this site are advised to consult attorney regarding their situation.
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