5 What are the consequences of divorce/separation?

5.1. How is the property (rights in rem) divided?

The community of property is dissolved by divorce (see Art. 1:99 BW). In principle the spouses are each entitled to one-half of the assets. After the dissolution of the community, each spouse can ask for the return of his/her clothes, jewellery, professional and business equipment, papers and mementos belonging to his/her family (see Art. 1:101 BW). The distribution can be established in a divorce agreement or by the judge (see Art. 3:185 BW). It can be requested at any time (see Art. 3:178 BW). Based on a netting covenant in the marital agreement, in the event of divorce there must also be a settlement (in the form of a monetary compensation) between the spouses.

5.2. Who is liable for existing debts after the divorce/separation?

After divorce, the ex-spouse remains liable for the entirety of the community debt which he/she entered into during the marriage. The other ex-spouse becomes jointly and severally liable for that debt after dissolution of the marriage. The creditor can only recover this debt from the community property that is allocated to the other ex-spouse. The debt can also be recovered from the private estate of the ex-spouse who entered into the debt, but not from the private estate of the other ex-spouse (see art. 1:102 BW).

5.3. Does one spouse have a claim to an equalisation payment?

5.3. The distribution of the community can take place by distributing the assets in kind or by paying a compensation in money. Distribution can be requested at any time (see art. 3:178 BW).