4 Can or must the matrimonial property regime be registered?

4.1. Do one or more matrimonial property registers exist in your country? Where?

Since 1 September 2011 there exists in Belgium a central register of marriage contracts. This digital register is managed by the Royal Federation of Belgian Notaries.

4.2. Which documents are registered? Which information is registered?

All marriage contracts and acts of amendment (modification of the matrimonial property regime or change to another regime) that are drafted by a Belgian civil law notary are registered in the central register of marriage contracts as of 1 September 2011. The central register of marriage contracts does not contain the acts themselves, but only metadata. For example, the register indicates when the persons involved concluded a marriage contract or act of amendment and what matrimonial property regime was chosen. The details of the parties as well as the identification of the person who has drawn up the act or has custody of it are also registered. The act and its actual content thus remain confidential.

4.3. How and by whom can the information in the register be accessed?

Firstly, civil law notaries, but also bailiffs may consult the register, among others. Other public authorities too may have access if the consultation is necessary for the execution of their legal missions. Private individuals may only consult the data of the acts that relate to themselves.

4.4. What are the legal effects of registration (validity, opposability)?

The registration in the central register of marriage contracts has no legal consequences.