New EU regulations for international couples in 18 Member States

EU Regulations 2016/1103 and 2016/1104 have already been implemented since last year to clarify the rules applicable to the property regime of international married couples or registered partnerships. They set clear rules for divorce or death. Put an end to parallel and, in some cases contradictory, proceedings in different Member States, for example relating to property or bank accounts.

The new rules make it easier to split common assets at less cost. More than 16 million international couples already enjoy clear procedures in the event of a divorce or the death of a partner. They will be able to save around € 350 million each year in the form of legal costs.

The New EU regulations:

  • clarify which national court has jurisdiction to assist couples in the management of their property or in its distribution between them in the event of divorce, separation or death;
  • clarify which national law takes precedence if several countries’ rules apply;
  • facilitate the recognition and enforcement in one Member State of a judgment in property matters given in another Member State.

Which EU Member States have recognized the new regulations?

Due to the inability to reach unanimity among all Member States, regulations were adopted and implemented in 18 of them (which is 70% of the EU population). Here are the countries where the new rules for international couples currently apply: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden. The other Member States may join at any time to both regulation and in the meantime will continue to apply its national law.

You can read the full text of the new EU regulations here:

If you need legal assistance with Family and Inheritance Law or Property Law, Euroformat and VD&A experts are at your disposal.

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