Some are saying that Tamar Epstein, the former Silver Spring resident who has not received a Jewish divorce for more than five years, is now free to go on with her life. Details of the arrangement are sketchy, however, as a source close to her former husband denied that an official Jewish bill of divorce, known as a get, was ever given.
“A get has not been given,” the source said emphatically.
But according to Rabbi Jeremy Stern, director of the Organization for the Resolution of Agunot, “the case is resolved. It is a closed case from our end.”
Stern’s organization advocates on behalf of agunot, the so-called “chained women” who, although civilly divorced from their husbands, may not marry according to Jewish law because their husbands have refused to provide them with the necessary legal papers.
In an email sent to the Washington Jewish Week, ORA announced that “after scores of rallies, thousands of letters and years of persistent advocacy and hopeful prayers … we are very excited to announce that Tamar Is Free!”
Stern said he couldn’t comment further on the case, which drew national attention, noting that “the situation is very sensitive right now.”
Epstein married Aharon Friedman, an aide to Ways and Means Committee chairman Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.), in April 2006. The couple had a daughter in November 2007 and then separated in March 2008. They sought a civil divorce in April 2010.
Suzanne Pollak writes for JT’s sister publication, Washington Jewish Week.