Consideration of petitionary matters

A petitionary matter merely pertaining to the registration of a given state of affairs, for example divorce, is decided by the district court at the registry. When the matter pertains to a dispute between the petitioner and the opposing party, the district court decides the matter in the same way as any civil dispute, that is, in most cases in a hearing.

Stages of proceedings

  • The petitioner delivers, sends or faxes the petition and annexes to the registry of the district court.
  • The petition may also be delivered to the registry by someone else than the petitioner.
  • The district court conducts an initial examination of the petition and, if necessary, requests by letter or by phone any additional information or documents that may be needed.
  • When the petitionary matter involves other parties, the district court requests a response or a statement from the parties concerned.

Decision at the registry

  • If the petitioner is the only party to the matter, the deciding official decides the matter at the registry on the basis of documents.
  • This also applies to matters that involve other parties, if the parties so agree or if the case regardless of disagreement is clear.

Decision in a hearing

  • If the petitionary matter is under dispute, the district court summons both the petitioner and the opposing party depending on the nature of the matter either to a preparatory hearing or a main hearing.
  • The judge decides on the matter either directly after the hearing, delivering the decisionto the parties orally, or sets a date for a written decision to be issued at the registry.
  • In a petitionary matter under dispute, the party who loses the case may be ordered to compensate for the legal costs of the opposing party.


  • The decision of the district court is sent to the petitioner, or the petitioner may opt to come to the registry of the district court and fetch it in person.


  • The district court collects a charge from the petitioner for the consideration of the matter.

Published 25.7.2019