Updated: Jun 28, 2019
Even though Ukrainian legislation does not contain a term “civil marriage” this term is widely used among people and lawyers and means cohabitation of a man and woman together without being officially married. In plane words this is when you live together with your girlfriend or boyfriend.
It is important because it creates certain legal consequences for a couple.
(i) By default, all property acquired by them during their living together is their joint property which means they are 50/50 owners thereof. Note that it is possible to conclude a contract to change or amend this rule. So when you decide to buy some real estate in Ukraine, make sure your love partner will be excluded in the contract from obtaining title on this property as well.
(ii) Each of partners is obliged to provide financial support for each other. This means you can be sued by your partner for financial support.
(iii) A child of one of the partners is obliged to take care of the other partner if this child lived with them as one family. This means your child can be sued by your partner for financial support.
In other words, there is no difference if a marriage is officially registered or not – both are considered being marriages by Ukrainian law and both receive the same legal protection.
So, even if you are not married to a person but lives with him/her as a family (in a civil marriage), then Ukrainian law obliges you to take care of that person if he/she requires so and all property gained by you during your living together (during your civil marriage) is considered as your joint property.
The idea is that people living together contribute to their common assets in equal parts. Otherwise it would be wrong to say that if a husband works and his wife stays at home taking care of their kids, then it is the husband who gains all family’s property and assets. Both of spouses contribute to the family’s wealth equally even though each of them does their specific part of work.
If one of the spouses had investments/assets before the civil marriage then all interests/dividends that had been gained by these investments/assets would belong only to one of the spouses (original owner) unless the other spouse contributed somehow to increase value of these investments.
Contact Legal Ideas law firm to get advice on your personal case.