Council Regulation (EU) 2016/1103

The Council Regulation (EU) 2016/1103 (the Regulation), also known as Rome IVa, deals with matrimonial property, in particular jurisdiction, recognition and enforcement, and applicable law. The Regulation applies only to spouses who marry or who specify the law applicable to the matrimonial property regime after 29 January 2019. 

Pursuant to Article 22 of the Regulation (Choice of the applicable law) the spouses or future spouses may agree to designate, or to change, the law applicable to their matrimonial property regime, provided that that law is one of the following:

  • the law of the State where the spouses or future spouses, or one of them, is habitually resident at the time the agreement is concluded; or
  • the law of a State of nationality of either spouse or future spouse at the time the agreement is concluded.

Pursuant to Art. 26 (Applicable law in the absence of choice by the parties) in the absence of a choice-of-law agreement pursuant to Article 22, the law applicable to the matrimonial property regime shall be the law of the State:

  • of the spouses' first common habitual residence after the conclusion of the marriage; or, failing that
  • of the spouses' common nationality at the time of the conclusion of the marriage; or, failing that
  • with which the spouses jointly have the closest connection at the time of the conclusion of the marriage, taking into account all the circumstances.

If the spouses married on or before 29 January 2019, German Court determine the applicable law as to matrimonial property under Art. 14 and 15 of the EGBGB. 

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