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Contribution to marriage charges

Verified 05 juillet 2019 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

Married persons are required to contribute to the costs of marriage according to their financial means. If one of the spouses does not fulfill his obligations, the other may compel him to do so. To do so, he must refer the matter to the Family Court Judge (Jaf) and apply for a contribution to the marriage charges.

The costs of marriage include all the expenses of living together: expenditure on housing, food, clothing, health, education of children, etc.

The spouses must contribute according to their respective income.

Approach

If one of the spouses does not contribute sufficiently to the costs of the marriage, the other spouse may refer the matter to the Family Court Judge (Jaf) to compel him to do so.

The application is to be filed with the court office of the couple's place of residence:

  • either by visiting the place,
  • by sending it by registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt.

The form cerfa n°11525 for the application to fix a contribution to the marriage charges should be used.

Request for contribution to marriage charges

Cerfa n° 11525*07 - Ministry of Justice

The application must be accompanied by all documents proving the resources and needs as well as civil registration documents:

  • Copy of the last 3 brides' pay slips and/or certificate of unemployment or long-term sick leave,
  • Justification of your expenses (rent receipt...), your needs and your resources
  • Justifications of social benefits received
  • Invoices relating to tuition, medical care or any other living expenses,
  • Birth certificate of the applicant and the children concerned by the application
  • Marriage certificate or copy of the family register
  • Copy of an identity document of the applicant (national identity card, passport...).

It is essential to provide your spouse's address.

The documents to be provided vary depending on your situation, please consult the application form for the list.

But that doesn't mean that the judge can ask you for more.

Conduct of the case

Spouses are summoned by registered letter with request for notice of receipt, to a non-public Jaf hearing.

They must appear in person, assisted or not by a lawyer. In the event of absence, the application will not be examined. A decision may also be made on the basis of the evidence provided by the present party alone.

  FYI : you can benefit from legal aid, under certain conditions.

Judgment

The judge shall determine the amount of the contribution of the spouse who does not fulfill his obligation to contribute to the expenses of the marriage. The judgment is served on this spouse by an act of bailiff.

The bailiff will request the direct payment of the husband's contribution:

  • or his employer,
  • or its depositors of funds (for example: bank, savings bank).

The bailiff's fees are charged to the debtor..

Challenge of judgment

A spouse who does not fulfill his obligation to contribute to the marriage may oppose judgment if he has been returned in his absence. He has one month from the day he was personally notified of the judgment.

To do so, he must send a registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt to the court's secretariat-registry.

He can appealby a lawyer before the Court of Appeal, within one month of notification of the judgment.

If, for example, the spouse who does not fulfill his or her obligation to contribute to the marriage is not solvent, he shall provide his spouse, on his request, with a certificate proving that the direct payment could not be made. He will do the same if the bailiff does not know his address or that of his employer.

The recovery by the Public Treasury can then be requested.

In the event of a change in the respective situations of the spouses, the judgment may be amended at the request of one of them to the Jaf.