Afghahi v. Ghafoorian (Va. Ct. App. 2010): Validity of Marriage Contract

In a divorce proceeding, the Circuit Court of Fairfax County upheld a couple’s marriage contract. On appeal, defendant Ali Afghahi raised several arguments against the validity of the contract, and claimed that upholding it would be inequitable; he also made several evidentiary objections, including that the marriage contract as admitted was not the original document and should therefore be barred according to the “best evidence rule.” He further argued that as no expert was called to testify about the meaning of marriage in Islamic cultures, the judgment was unenforceable. The appellate court rejected these arguments and affirmed the judgment against him (and in favor of the validity of the marriage contract), concluding that his objections were untimely because he had not raised them in the lower court.

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