There is still much unclear about the consequences of a no-deal Brexit for family law. There is a lot of EU legislation in the field of family law. For example about where you can divorce or start an maintenance procedure. But also, which court decides whether you can move with your children to the Netherlands or, in the opposite situation, to the United Kingdom, if your former partner does not give permission for this. At the time the United Kingdom is leaving the EU without a withdrawal deal, the EU rules on family law will lose its force. Within the EU - and therefore in the Netherlands - the EU rules will continue to be applied. This also applies to British citizens who end up in family proceedings in the Netherlands. The Dutch court will then determine on the basis of the EU rules whether it will accept jurisdiction to hear the case.

However, if two British citizens residing in the Netherlands are involved in a legal dispute in The Netherlands, it can still be disputed whether the case should be dealt with by the UK court or by the Dutch court. The EU rules that provided clarity on this, no longer apply in the United Kingdom after the UK is leaving the EU without a deal.

Furthermore, the judicial decisions of Dutch courts are currently recognized in the United Kingdom without complex proceedings and a Dutch judgment can also be enforced in the United Kingdom. In the case of a no-deal Brexit, automatic recognition and enforcement is no longer guaranteed, as EU law no longer applies in the United Kingdom, and with it the reciprocity of accepting each other's judicial decisions has been cancelled. An EU court decision can only be enforced in the UK if the UK court will recognize the decision.

Any questions about Family Law | British citizens in The Netherlands?
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Delissen Martens member of the 'European Law Firm'
International marriage; law applicable to matrimonial property regimes
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