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Updated : 02/02/2016


Maintenance (support for family members)

Rules on maintenance obligations vary from country to country. The extent of support is not the same everywhere. However, EU rules do apply if you need to provide or receive maintenance to or from someone in another EU country.

Which country's court is responsible?

You can file a request concerning maintenance mainly with the courts:

  • in the country where your ex-partner or relative lives;
  • in the country where the person with a claim to maintenance lives;
  • responsible for cases involving your status (a divorce for example) or parental responsibility – if the matter concerning maintenance is related to such cases.

Unless the dispute concerns maintenance obligations towards a child under 18, you may, if your ex-spouse or relative agrees, and subject to certain conditions, jointly choose which court should examine your case.

In cases involving two or more EU countries, the law governing maintenance is not necessarily the law of the country where you can file your request.

Find out which laws apply to your maintenance caseбългарски (bg)czech (cs)dansk (da)Deutsch (de)eesti (et)ελληνικά (el)español (es)Français (fr)Gaeilge (ga)italiano (it)latviešu (lv)lietuvių (lt)magyar (hu)Malti (mt)Nederlands (nl)polski (pl)português (pt)română (ro)slovenčina (sk)slovenščina (sl)suomi (fi)svenska (sv), how a conflict of laws could be solved and what the consequences would be.

The central authority responsible for maintenance in the EU country where you live can help you introduce a maintenance request abroad.

Enforcing maintenance rulings abroad

If you want a maintenance ruling made in one EU country declared enforceable in another, there is a simplified procedure for doing this.

The central authority responsible for maintenance in the EU country where you live can also help you to recover maintenance.

For national information on enforcement measures, the simplified EU procedure and the authorities which handle them, see:

Choose :

  • Austria Deutsch
  • Belgium français
  • Bulgaria български
  • Croatia hrvatski
  • Cyprus Ελληνικά
  • Czech Republic čeština
  • Denmark
  • Estonia Eesti
  • Finland suomi
  • France
  • Germany Deutsch
  • Greece Ελληνικά
  • Hungary magyar
  • Ireland
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