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Marriage In Community of Property Agreements

If you do not sign an antenuptial contract before marriage, you are automatically married in community of property in terms of South African law.

When signing an antenuptial contract, it must be in front of an attorney (who is also a notary). The signed contract is lodged for registration in the Deeds Registries Office.

‘In community of property’ means that everything a spouse owns, as well as his/her debts gets’ combined from before the time of their marriage and put together in a joint estate. From this point onwards, everything either partner earns or buys will form part of this joint estate, including any debts incurred by either one of them. Everything they earn after their marriage will also form part of this joint estate, including any debt and liabilities incurred by either one of them.

If one spouse is reckless with their financial affairs, it will affect the other spouse, as they are each responsible for one another’s debts.

In Community of Property

Law for Women does not advise couples to get married ‘in community of property’.

We have had many instances where clients have not had the benefit of professional advice regarding antenuptial contracts and we have had both spouses lose everything because one spouse has become insolvent.



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