They said “I do” but life did not go the way they thought…In a situation of divorce or separation between a couple, it is often problematic to split a shared property while satisfying both sides. It is therefore better to list, from the beginning, all assets.
When two people file for divorce they usually have to divide the wealth and respect the rules of the appropriate matrimonial property rights. There are two kinds of rights in Mauritius: Separation of property and Community of property.
Separation of assets/goods: Chosen on the wedding day (or after a change of matrimonial rights), separate property rights give each spouse a great economic and material independence. Indeed, all assets acquired before and after marriage are separate properties, both spouses are the owners of their own wealth. In this case, in a divorce a partner has no right on the fortune of the other. If one of the partners has contributed in the purchase of property, he is entitled to the benefit of the same.
The right of separate property has the advantage of safeguarding the interest of the spouses and it protects from errors or other economic difficulties. However, it may result in some injustice to the spouse who is economically weak, particularly during the dissolution of the rights.
Community of property: Couples who get married without signing a marriage contract are subject to the right of community of property. In this case, the total income and wealth of the couple are put together in a common asset. Depending on the situation, the acquisition date (before or after marriage), origin (purchase, donation, etc ...) and their financing will define if the goods belong to the community or to one of the spouses. If a divorce takes place, both spouses have the same rights on the common asset. However, it will be taken into account (in the case of a contract signed in advance) which of the two partners have been investing more in the property.
GOOD TO KNOW: If during the years of marriage, one of the partners has been investing in the business of the other and helped to increase the turnover of the company, the divorce judge will have the right to assign for damages and compensation in order to support the one who invested more.
ADVICE: Commonly, a couple should note all expenses when they have a joint property. In case of divorce or separation it is advantageous to prove who bought the property with what means.