Family Law and Divorce in Spain


Divorce in Spain

Divorces,and separations within a family unit, besides being a legal process, can have an emotional, personal and psychological impact on all parties involved. It is difficult enough to cope with the traumas that a break up brings if you are going through the process in the Country of your birth and in a language you understand.

Undertaking the procedure in a foreign country adds extra difficulties and can leave you feeling very exposed and unsure of your rights.

Being well advised legally is without doubt an essential part of undertaking Divorce proceedings in Spain, given the difficulty of the situation already; it will always give a certain piece of mind to know you are in the hands of an experienced professional who has ensured you have been adequately advised.

Poor advice, or lack of advice, may create many future headaches and serious financial issues.

What are the added benefits of legal advice during the process of Divorce

Dealing with a divorce or separation in a friendly manner is always the best option. Nevertheless, given that during divorce proceedings emotions can run high it is very easy for any little detail to ruin the initial good intentions and for the parties to enter into a dispute.

Having a objective independent Spanish lawyer services or mediator to help manage this potentially volatile situation is tremendously important and helps ensure the best possible outcome and avoidance of unnecessary disputes.

Divorce in Spain and the foreign community

Given the large foreign community residing in Spain, most of whom are not as well informed on Divorce law in Spain as a Spanish national, it is important initially the legal adviser informs the client of the applicable legislation and the jurisdictions under which the Divorce will fall.

Often the applicable legislation is established as of the moment of the matrimonial union.

According to the application of European legislation, the competent jurisdiction may be the last marital address, or the address of either spouse as elected by the plaintiff. Advice as to the individual situation and where and how any Divorce proceedings should be undertaken is a first step.

The parent and child relationships

The separation, divorce or the split of a couple is not only a legal process, but a social, family and personal transformation that affects not only the parents but also underage children.When there are children, the couple can split up, but there is a link that will always remain, both will continue being parents and sharing a life in common which should be protected in its widest sense.

It is especially important to legally regulate the measures of the relationships of the parents with their children to avoid continual disagreements and conflicts that can affect the children on the longer term.

The parent-child relationship should therefore be agreed and then obligatorily fixed by a court sentence. If this does not happen and the relationship breaks down further at a later date, and or in the event of non compliance by either party they cannot be legally obligated to comply.

Custody, visitation rights, communication with the parent, who does not have custody, child support, contribution to extraordinary expenses and other aspects that the parents consider as important, must be agreed and then legally enforced.

Understanding the rights of any children and the rights of the parents in each situation as it relates to Spanish Law is fundamental.

Liquidation of the joint assets of a married couple

Often outside of the issues surrounding Children the point of greatest conflict in matrimonial or common law break ups tends to be the liquidation of joint assets, if they exist.

The liquidation of assets in Spain is very complex and in most instances legal advice is required and essential.

A list of common assets must be made, their real market value given and an agreement on how to split them a fair manner reached.

One of the key problems during divorce or separation of married couples is the general agreement of what constitutes a common assets and what does not. There is often a big difference of opinion, depending on which side you are on, as to what value should be placed on the main home or other assets, and how these assets are then split.

This aspect of family law is very broad so sound legal advice is required to ensure you know your rights and the best manner to proceed in this respect.

Common law couples

The stable union between two people not joined via marriage does not have uniform legislation in Spain.

Every autonomous region in Spain has its own legislation in this respect. Even though there are many similarities between most, there are also large differences regarding some factors.

If you need advice in any Family Matters contact us today for a free consultation.

2 thoughts on “Family Law and Divorce in Spain

  1. Lavinia Maria McGrath

    I need urgent advice on divorce. We are both British citizens and I have lived in Spain now for over 10 years. My husband has always work in the UK up until5 years ago where he stated working in china. My husband had kept many things from me but 2 years ago I found out he had had an affair and had also bought a house back in the UK without me knowing. I confronted him about his affair and he just walked out and left me and the children we have been married for 14 years and he has always refused to inform me of where he lives. I already have a lawyer who I have seem on and off over the past 9 months but nothing much but trying to negotiate has happened and my husband is being ridicules with his offer to me. I will be 53 this year and haven’t work on the agreement that I bought up the children, looked after the house we bought here in Spain and settle us into the Spanish way of living. I’m totally lost and feel that everything can be taken away from me. I would really appreciate if I could come and see you and get some advice on what I can do. I don’t want to disrespect my present lawyer but feel that maybe he hasn’t had to desk with a divorce like this and his main cases have been in property. Could you contact me and maybe we can make an appointment for me to get some advice.

    With kind regards


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