Divorce and division of a community of property

In the event of a divorce, the division of the community of property or the settlement of a matrimonial contract must be considered. The majority of people still marry in a community of property. A community of property is present if no matrimonial contract was drawn up prior to or during the marriage. In principle, all assets of the spouses present in the community of property form part of the matrimonial property, and therefore belong to both partners jointly. For example the house, all goods in the house (the contents), the car, the bank balances, any savings policies and debts. However, this also concerns a company or shares in a company run by one or both of the spouses in the form of a private limited company. There are a few exceptions to this general rule. Monies or property which are acquired from an inheritance and of which the deceased has determined by a will that his/her inheritance will not form part of the matrimonial property, remain the private property of the spouse who inherited those assets. Such a specific clause in a will is also referred to as an exclusion clause. A donation can be acquired privately (subject to exclusion) by one of the spouses if the grantor has specified this expressly at the time of the donation. Furthermore, personal injury compensation and severance pay can possibly fall (partly) outside the matrimonial property.


If a divorce is on the agenda, agreements must be reached about the division of the joint matrimonial property. The guiding principle is that the matrimonial property is divided in two. We will always firstly draw up an inventory together with you of all the assets present and assess for each asset to what extent this possibly forms part of the matrimonial property, or whether it potentially falls outside this. Then we will determine, together with you, how the assets can and have to be divided. An agreement must also be reached regarding any debts, insofar as this is possible. It is often possible to reach agreements with the other spouse about the division of the joint assets. In that case, we will arrange a proper recording of the agreements reached in a divorce agreement. Sometimes it is impossible to reach agreements and it will be necessary to apply to the court for a decision on this; for example, if the parties cannot agree on the value of one or more assets. In that case, the court will appoint an expert. In the case of the personal house, this will be an estate agent; for a company, this will be an accountant. The family law specialists of AK Advocaten are experienced in the assistance of ex-spouses during the division of the assets and the conducting of division proceedings. We can be of particular assistance should companies form part of the assets to be divided. Together with you, we will also consider the consequences of the community of property during the divorce. For as long as the community of property is still in existence, you can be confronted with the debts which your wife or husband has entered into without your permission or knowledge. The community of property terminates by means of submission of a divorce petition. From that point in time, the matrimonial property has been dissolved. After termination of the community, the spouses are also no longer liable for the debts which the other spouse enters into from that point in time. For this reason the lawyers of AK Advocaten will always discuss with you at which point in time it is recommended to submit the divorce petition. If necessary we can immediately proceed with the submission of a divorce petition. If you would like more information about how we can assist you then please do not hesitate to contact us. Please contact us. Family Law