2 Is there a statutory matrimonial property regime and if so, what does it provide?
2.1. Please describe the general principles: Which goods are part of community property? Which goods are part of the separate estates of the spouses?
Statutory regime of community of property:
In default of a contract between the spouses in which they choose another regime, the statutory regime of community of property shall apply (Art. 18 para. 2 FC). Article 21 and the following Articles of the Family Code regulate the statutory regime of community of property. Assets acquired during marriage as a result of the joint contributions of the spouses belong jointly to both spouses (they are part of the community property), regardless of on whose behalf they have been acquired. The community property does not include assets acquired before the marriage or assets acquired by inheritance or by donation during the marriage.
Movable property acquired by one spouse during the marriage which serves for his/her personal use, profession or trade, is his/her personal property. Movables acquired by a spouse who is a sole trader during the marriage are also part of his/her personal property. Assets acquired during the marriage entirely by means of personal property are also personal (Art. 22 and 23 FC).
2.2. Are there legal assumptions concerning the attribution of property?
2.3. Should the spouses establish an inventory of assets? If so, when and how?
The spouses do not have to establish an inventory of assets.
2.4. Who is in charge of the administration of the property? Who is entitled to dispose of the property? May one spouse dispose of/administer the property alone or is the consent of the other spouse necessary (e.g. in cases of disposal of the spouses’ home)? What effect does the missing consent have on the validity of a legal transaction and on opposability towards a third party?
Both spouses are entitled to manage the community property. Acts concerning the management of the community property can be performed by each of the spouses (Art. 24 para. 1 FC).
While the marriage lasts neither of the spouses can dispose of the share of the community property that he/she would receive upon termination of the community of property. Disposition of assets belonging to the community property shall be made jointly by both spouses (Art. 24 para. 3 FC).
Disposition of common immovable property made by one spouse alone is contestable. The other spouse may initiate a claim within six months as from the date this disposition has become known to him/her, but not later than three years as from its performance (Art. 24 para. 4 FC).
In case of disposition of common movable property for consideration made by one spouse without the consent of the other, the contract is binding on the other spouse, if the third party did not know or reasonably could not have known that there is no consent of the other spouse. In case of gratuitous disposition of a common movable or in case of disposition which requires writing with legalization of signatures by a civil law notary the rule for disposing of immovable property without the consent of the other spouse is applied (see above) (Art. 24 para. 5 FC).
Even if a spouse is the sole owner of the family home, he/she cannot dispose of it without the consent of the other spouse if the spouses do not have another home. If there is no consent, the disposition shall be performed with permission of the district judge, if it is found that it is not harmful to the underage children and the family (Art. 26 FC).
Each of the spouses may enter into a contract to dispose of their personal property with third parties or with the other spouse (Art. 25 FC).
2.5. Are any legal transactions made by one spouse also binding on the other?
As already mentioned, in case of disposition of common movable property for consideration made by one spouse without the consent of the other, the contract is binding on the other spouse, if the third party did not know or reasonably could not have known that there is no consent of the other spouse. Debts incurred by a spouse for the satisfaction of the needs of the family are common debts for which both spouses are liable (Art. 32 FC).
2.6. Who is liable for debts incurred during the marriage? Which property may be used by creditors to satisfy their claims?
The expenses necessary to satisfy the needs of the family shall be borne by both spouses. They are jointly liable for debts incurred to meet the needs of the family (Art. 32 FC). The spouses are liable for their personal debts with their personal property and with their share in the community property.
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Couples in Bulgaria
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