Divorce may not be recognized under any circumstances (Roman Catholic doctrine) or, where the consent or the representation of both parties is necessary under the law, may not be granted if consent is not forthcoming from one party. The refusal of divorce may lead to a conjugal status outside the law (bigamous marriage, cohabitation, adultery), the children of which will be illegitimate; and both parents and children of such unions may forfeit legal rights.
Divorce is not recognized in Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain, where the Catholic religion is very strong. Judicial separation, which is allowed, does not enable the spouses to remarry. Individuals may refuse to consent to divorce for reasons of economic security and status of children (mainly in the case of women) or because of the cost (mainly in the case of men). Under Israeli law, divorce requires mutual consent of the husband and wife. A man separated from his wife can begin a second relationship and even commit bigamy legally but a woman is branded as an adulteress, can lose custody of her children and any new children born from that relationship are bastards who can only marry other bastards.