KL Court Rules That Husbands Can Legally Have Mistresses With An Agreement

A landmark decision.
In a surprising legal decision, the Kuala Lumpur High Court has ruled that agreements allowing non-Muslim husbands to have mistresses are lawful.

This means that married couples can decide how they want their relationships and lifestyles to be based on their “unique needs, desires and circumstances”.

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Wife signs agreement allowing husband to have mistress

According to the landmark decision made in Divorce Petition No: WA-33-30-01/2021, the case revolved around a Singapore-born woman named HLC, who signed an agreement allowing her husband named PTL to keep a mistress all throughout their marriage.

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Married couples during their wedding
For illustration purposes only. Photo via Canva

Years after the agreement was signed in Aug 1997, HLC filed for divorce in Jan 2021, claiming that the agreement was void as she was forced into signing and wasn’t aware of what she was up for.

However, her claim was dismissed by Justice Evrol Mariette Peters, who found that she had not only placed her initial on every page of the agreement, but also signed it in the presence of several witnesses.

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The judge also ruled that such agreements held statutory recognition under Section 56 of the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976. 
Couples stressed
For illustration purposes only. Photo via Canva

In October 2020, HLC moved out of the home with her five children—three sons aged 26, 25, and 18 respectively, and two daughters aged 23 and 21. They relocated to Plaza Berjaya, a property owned by PTL and his business partner.

Citing her husband’s infidelity and unreasonable behavior, HLC initiated divorce proceedings and requested the following:

  • Maintenance for herself and 2 of their children
  • Matrimonial assets to be divided equally
  • Damages from a co-respondent named GEN, whom she accused of committing adultery with her husband, causing her marriage to fall apart

Husband ordered to pay maintenance

Although the High Court ruled that PTL was legally allowed to keep a mistress based on the agreement, he was nevertheless ordered to pay RM10,000 in spousal maintenance and RM6,000 in child maintenance after Judge Peters granted the divorce.

Child support
For illustration purposes only. Photo via Canva

She also ordered the division of the couple’s shared assets, including immovable properties, vehicles, cash, and company shares.

However, HLC’s claim for damages from GEN was rejected as the court found little evidence to prove that adultery had taken place.


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