De facto marital union

portada union marital de hecho

The de facto marital union is a figure recognized in Colombia that establishes a form of cohabitation similar to marriage, but without the legal formality.

In Colombia, the law states that in order to form a common-law marital union there must be:

  1. A permanent, exclusive and singular coexistence, which means that there cannot be a plurality of relationships.
  2. It must be monogamous, whether between couples of the same or different sex, but only between two people.
  3. They cannot be married to each other, but they can be married to other people.
  4. There can be no blood relationship between them.

Effects: The de facto marital union grants couples a series of rights and duties similar to those of marriage. Some of the most important effects are:

  • Rights in pension substitution.
  • Application of the rules of domestic violence.
  • Civil liability rights.
  • Inheritance rights.
  • Right to alimony during the duration of the marital union, and at the end of the same when there is mistreatment.
  • Presumption of paternity.
  • Exemption from the duty of reporting and declaration.
  • It is possible to conclusion of marital contracts.
  • There is a change in marital status to permanent partners.

It is important to mention that with respect to the assets, in the common-law marital union it is possible that the patrimonial partnership arises either by way of presumption once the couple has been living together in a stable and uninterrupted manner for two years without any impediment to form a marriage or the existence of the same can also be declared before a notary public by means of a public deed, in a conciliation center or before a judge.

According to the Ministry of Justice and Law, the request for the constitution of the de facto patrimonial partnership must contain:

  1. Description of the notary to whom it is addressed (if filed with a notary), description of the conciliation center to whom it is addressed (if filed with a conciliation center) or description of the court to whom it is addressed (if filed with a judge).
  2. The names, identification and place of residence of the permanent partners (must be the same for both).
  3. Contact telephone number of each of the members of the couple.
  4. An email if available.
  5. Manifestation of the facts that the couple has cohabited uninterruptedly for at least two years (existence of the de facto marital union), indicating the date on which the cohabitation began.
  6. Declaration that none of the permanent partners has a (legal) impediment to marry.
  7. If one or both of the partners is unable to marry, the marital partnership resulting from the marriage must have been dissolved prior to the commencement of uninterrupted cohabitation.
  8. Documents and evidence that prove the existence of the common-law marriage and the patrimonial partnership.

Finally, the de facto marital union arises from the beginning of the cohabitation and the patrimonial partnership after two years of cohabitation. Therefore, a common-law marriage can exist without a property partnership.