Registering rights derived from acts between a married person and a third party

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1. When a married person becomes the owner of a registered property, which special requirements derived from his/her civil status must be taken into consideration in order to get the new title registered in the Land Registry?

The requirements are: The identity of the purchaser (surname, first name, date of birth, home address, and national registry number) and his spouse and the matrimonial regime. If the married person wishes to be the sole owner, this must also be stated in the act as well as the legal provision authorizing it.

This information is declared to the notary who ensures its control, via the national register, identity card, the marriage certificate, the matrimonial agreement concluded prior to acquisition, the database of matrimonial property regimes, the civil status register. All these databases and/or acts are proof of the information declared.

If the matrimonial property regime is not the legal regime, no requirements other than those set out above. The act of purchase must nevertheless specify exactly under which regime the spouses are married.

If the spouses come from another State and that Belgian law is applicable: there are no other requirements than those set out above either. In this case, the notary must also check the information declared by the spouses, but this time, perhaps on the basis of documents to which he does not have access (e.g. a document issued by the embassy) provided by the spouses.

2. How the registration in favor of a married person would be done? Would any interested party be able to know by checking the land registry information any restriction in the powers of the owner derived from the matrimonial property regime?

The married person will be taken over as sole owner of the property as far as his matrimonial regime or te law allows.

The notary is responsible for drafting the act, which must comply with the law applicable to matrimonial property regimes. If he were to ignore it, he would be questioned on this subject by the Land Registry before transcription. Land registry will comply with its response.

Yes, being taken over as a sole proprietor depends on your matrimonial regime.

Information relating to restrictions on the rights held by the owner must, by law, be included in the deed for transcription. However, they are not directly accessible in the Mortgage Land Registry. To obtain them, it is necessary to ask the for lans registry a copy of the act.

The same applies to the matrimonial regime of spouses subject to foreign law.

3. What will the Land Registry demand from a married proprietor to register the transmission or any modification of his/her registered title?

In Belgium this change can only take place by signing an authentic act or a judicial decision which will be the title of the transmission. Consequently, for the other questions, reference is made to the answers given above.

Practical case 1

Janos, who is married to Elena under a matrimonial economic regime of community of joint assets, buys an immovable property. He signs the deed of transfer before a local notary, acting solely and on his own, without any intervention of his wife Maria. The deed of transfer is sent to the registry for registration. 

This transaction is not allowed, in Belgium, without the agreement of his wife but this is the responsibility of the notary, not the Land Registry. Therefore, the convention will be registered in the Land Registry.

Practical case 2

Pierre is married to Michelle and although the matrimonial property regime established by the applicable law is a joint community one, the same law allows the spouses to modify that legal regime adopting a different one which is the property separation of assets regime, for which purpose they both sign a matrimonial property agreement modifying their matrimonial community property regime into a separation of assets one.

When Michelle buys the right of usufruct on an immovable asset, she appears on her own in the contract of sale and the transfer deed and she wants that the registration to be made in such a manner that no restriction or limitation derived from her marriage appear in the registry.

No control by the the Land registry, the deed will be registered. No evidence will be required by the Land registry. The notary is responsible for the information contained in the deed. In principle, the latter must mention in the deed of acquisition of usufruct, not only the matrimonial regime of the purchaser but also its modifications.