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Family

DIVORCE

At present, there is no longer a list of reasons to file for divorce such as adultery, abandonment of the home, etc.  This no longer exists. The objective is to ensure the married parties obtain their divorce as promptly and expeditiously as possible, although in a high percentage of cases, there continues to be conflict.

In cases of domestic violence against the child

Breach of obligation to provide alimony payments for more than 90 days without just cause.

For the abandonment of the child by the father or mother for more than three months without just cause.

When a person with parental authority commits an intentional crime against the person or against the property of the children, for which said person has been convicted with an enforceable judgement.

For the unjustified breach of court orders placed on the person with parental authority which are aimed at remedying acts of domestic violence, when said acts have affected their offspring.

When the child has been illegally taken away or detained by a person with parental authority

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REMOVAL OF PARENTAL AUTHORITY

The law provides for different reasons for which it is possible to request that a judge decree the removal of parental authority.

This is a very straight forward procedure carried out before a Civil Registry Office judge. The requirements are a) of legal age; b) that they do not have joint assets or that they declare under oath that these have already been liquidated; c) that they do not have children or, if they do, that the children are of legal age. With regards to documentation, it is necessary to complete the form issued by the Civil Registry Office; a recent legalised copy of the marriage certificate; original and uncertified copy of official identifications of the applicants; original and copy of proof of address (no older than three months) for the address declared by the applicants; written declaration under oath that the female party is not pregnant, or a medical certificate which attest to the inability to procreate children.

This is also a simple procedure. It is necessary to present the application before a family court judge. This application must be signed by both parties, and be accompanied by the respective agreement in which, amongst other things, they have established how assets will be divided in the case of joint ownership of property; who will have custody of any minors they have procreated, visitation and living arrangements, and the amount of alimony to be paid.

Whatever the reason that you require the divorce, it is no longer necessary to state it; it is sufficient to apply for it, and even if your spouse do not wish to agree to it, the judge will grant it . Together with your divorce application, you must submit an agreement proposal in which, amongst other things, you propose how assets will be divided in the case of joint ownership of property; who will have custody of any minors you have procreated together, visitation and living arrangements, and the amount of alimony you are requesting or proposing to provide. This application and your agreement proposal will be notified to your spouse, who can answer with a counterproposal. At the scheduled hearing, the judge will try to mediate so that you are able to reach an agreement; in the even that no agreement is reached, the divorce shall be declared and the judge will determine who will have custody of the children, the visitation and living arrangements, and the provisional alimony. Once divorced, you will need to negotiate the specific terms, such as the increase or decrease in alimony, modification of living or visitation arrangements, or change in guardianship or custody of minors.

Alimony shall be requested by either party for the spouse who requires it for themself or for their children that are minors; the amount determined by the judge or agreement can be increased or decreased.

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SUCCESSIONS

Succession law is the body of law which governs not only the destination of the patrimony of a person after their death, but also the new legal relationships that arise as a consequence of the death.

INTESTATE SUCCESSION

ALSO KNOWN AS INTESTATE INHERITANCE GENERALLY OCCURS, AMONGST OTHER REASONS, WHEN:

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FAQ

What is alimony?

This includes food, clothing, accommodation, medical attention, hospitals, and where applicable, pregnancy and birth expenses. With regards to minors, this shall also include expenses for their education expenses and expenses to ensure they are able to carry out a profession or art in accordance with their personal circumstances. For persons with any type of disability or that have been declared in a state of interdiction, alimony includes what is necessary to ensure, where possible, their habilitation or rehabilitation and their development. For senior citizens who lack financial capacity, in addition to everything necessary for their geriatric care, food will be provided as part of the family.

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Can the percentage of alimony ordered by the judge be increased?

Yes, but you need to prove that the circumstances have changed. You lawyer will guide you.

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I have alimony for 30% of two of my children that I had with another partner who is not my spouse. I would like to know what happens if I retire.

Your obligation only ends once the children have an honest occupation or profession according to their gender and personal circumstances in the even that they do not wish to study until they are 18. If they study, there are provisions that payment can be required until they are 25, but only for undergraduate degrees; this does not include specialisations or postgraduate degrees.

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If there are multiple wills, which is valid?

It is always the last one, but it is possible that the inheritors claim that this last will is null and void. If they are successful, the will previous to the null and void one shall be valid. It is also possible that the inheritor rejects the inheritance, or that the inheritor becomes incapable of inheriting and there is no substitute inheritor. In this case, it is necessary to proceed to intestate succession. If there are different wills, it is very likely that there are differences with regards to assets and inheritors, which can give rise to disagreements from one of them. Our laws give many options and variations, but they can only be invoked by lawyers with experience.

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