Registering rights derived from acts between spouses

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Would the Land Registry make changes in ownership’s entry (proprietorship) on the bases of acts performed between the spouses?

In Belgium, some acts between spouses can change the title of property. These are the following acts:

  • Sale between spouses, gift between spouses.
  • Matrimonial agreement and amendment of matrimonial agreement.
  • Act of liquidation of the matrimonial regime, act of distribution between spouses.
  • For foreign spouses: No difference if the law applicable to their matrimonial regime is Belgian law. In other cases, these acts will be subject to the applicable law under private international law.
  • As legal cohabitants are not subject to a matrimonial regime, acts between them are considered as acts between persons who are not related to each other. The property belonging to them will either be subject to the ordinary system of joint ownership or will be considered as own property.

Except for the act amending the marriage contract, which sometimes requires an authentic inventory of all the spouses’ property, for these acts, no relevant document is required, subject to the authentic instrument itself or possibly the judgment, which constitutes the title of the agreement.

Requirements to be fulfilled in these acts : The identity of the spouses (surname, first name, date of birth, home address, and national registry number), matrimonial regime, rights held by the owner over the property, origin of ownership of the property, mortgage status of the property and possibly special conditions for the transfer.

Practical cases

Paul and Mary married and they both own jointly an immovable property registered as such in your land book. Following a divorced between them, the property will become of exclusive ownership of Mary.

Paul is the registered owner of an immovable property acquired by succession. Sometime after his registration, Paul marries Mary and decides that the property will be in the common ownership of both spouses, so they perform the transmission act by a matrimonial property agreement according to the applicable law.

This change of ownership will not happen in the Land Registry that based on either the court decision or by an agreement between spouses in order the liquidation of their common assets.

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