All marriages contracted after January 1, 2018 are subject to a new matrimonial regime. In short, property acquired before marriage is no longer part of marital property. However, it is advisable to get advice in the event of a conjugal agreement when there is a significant pre-marital patrimony or if one of the spouses owns a business. How can Bowmer and Nuiten help you? Our divorce lawyers regularly advise domestic and foreign clients on divorce and marital property sharing and can advise the best divorce strategy to enforce your rights. Before marriage, we can also discuss the consequences of your proposed marriage plan and marital agreement status. If you fail to agree, the general common law rules for the distribution of ownership apply: in the Netherlands, it is still prohibited to enter into agreements on future spousal or child support. It is possible that future legislation will change this situation. However, at present, such a clause is not applicable. Couples always have the option to agree on how the property is distributed in a marriage contract. The Family Act (the “law”) does not apply to a married couple if they withdraw from the law through a marriage contract.
Couples are advised to be legal counseled with respect to sharing property or signing contracts. In both cases, the parties must be represented by counsel during the proceedings. A divorce application is processed by the District Court (Rechtbank) of the applicant`s place of residence or one of the petitioners. An application for divorce can be filed at any time after the marriage; the parties are not required to have been married for a specified period of time. Divorce comes into effect when the court order is registered in the register of birth, marriage and death (Burgerlijke Stand). Divorce can only be registered when the decision can no longer be challenged (becomes final). Divorce must be registered within six months of the force of the law, otherwise the decision will lose its effect and, in this case, the divorce can no longer be registered. If the marriage took place abroad and the foreign marriage certificate was not registered in a Dutch register, the divorce order from the Netherlands must be registered in the specific register of births, marriages and deaths of the municipality of The Hague.