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Kenya is a former British colony that gained independence in 1963. Therefore, the Kenyan legal system has been influenced by English law, in addition to customary and Islamic law. The sources of law are the Kenyan Constitution, Kenyan legislation, Kenyan subsidiary legislation, Kenyan case law, customary laws (including Hindu, Muslim and African laws), English doctrines of equity and English common law. Legislation relating to children was brought together under the Children’s Act 2001.
Although the majority of the population of Kenya are Christians there is a Muslim minority and a minority who are followers of indigenous beliefs.  Therefore the Constitution does not establish an official religion for the State.  The Muslim population in Kenya is of diverse origin and although the majority follow the Shafi School of law there are also followers of other schools.

Available Information

reunite´s Summary Text for Kenya 
Legal Texts

•    Current Constitution

•    Draft Constitution 2004

•    Judicature Act, Cap 8, Laws of Kenya

•    Children’s Act, 2001

•    Foreign Judgements (Reciprocal Enforcement) Act Cap. 43

•    Kadhi’s Court Act  Cap. 11 Laws of Kenya

•    Age of Majority Act  Cap. 33 Laws of Kenya

•    The Mohammedan Marriage, Divorce and Succession Ordinance Cap.156 Laws of Kenya

•    The Mohammedan Marriage and Divorce Registration Ordinance Cap. 155 Laws of Kenya

•    Hindu Marriage and Divorce Act No. 28 1960

•    Matrimonial Causes Ordinance Cap. 152 Laws of Kenya  

•    African Christian Marriage and Divorce Ordinance Cap 151 Laws of Kenya.


•    Convention on the Rights of the Child Report 2000


•    Kenya: Constitutional endorsement of Muslim courts provokes anger, Women Living Under Muslim Laws, 2004.

•    Balancing Acts: The Rights of Women and Cultural Minorities in Kenyan Marital Law, Catherine Hardee, New York University Law Review, Vol. 79:712, 2004.

•    Family Law Summary (Emory Project)

•    Diagram of the Court Structure