Property relations of spouses in Croatia: regulations under family law

In the Republic of Croatia, family law regulates the property relations of spouses. Here is
an overview of marital and personal property and the significance of marriage contracts:

  1. marital property:
    Marital property includes property acquired through work during the marriage as well as
    property derived from it. Spouses are co-owners in equal shares, unless they have agreed
    otherwise. Gambling winnings and property benefits from copyrights and related rights
    also fall under marital property.
  2. separate property:
    A spouse’s own assets consist of property owned before the marriage or acquired during
    the marriage, but not through work, gambling or pecuniary benefits from copyright.
    Inherited assets or gifts remain a spouse’s own assets.
  3. marriage contract:
    Spouses can regulate property relationships by means of a marriage contract. This can be
    concluded before or during the marriage, whereby contracts concluded before the
    marriage have a suspensive effect. Validity requires a written form and notarized
  4. regulations for non-marital unions:
    Statutory provisions on property relations also apply to non-marital unions, provided
    they last at least 3 years or less if a child has been born together.
  5. Applicable law in the event of a dispute:
    The law of the state of which the spouses are nationals shall apply to legal disputes
    concerning property relations. If the spouses are nationals of different countries, the law
    of the country in which they are domiciled shall apply. In the absence of agreement, the
    law of the last common residence or, in case of doubt, the law of the Republic of Croatia
    shall apply