Berlin: +49 30 88702382 | Thessaloniki: +30 2310 284408 [email protected]

Our Expertise

Greek Family Law

Family law covers the joys of marriage and adoptions and the stresses of prenuptial agreements, divorce and child custody hearings. It is a part of everyday life; sometimes, you need a lawyer to help you manage it.

Family law matters are often complex, stressful and emotionally charged.

Having assisted many clients in the field of family law, at Leptokaridou Law Firm, we believe that a lawyer’s role is to represent his or her client’s interests without adding additional reasons for stress and agitation and always maintaining as much as possible an atmosphere of cooperation that benefits everyone.

When discussing divorce, spousal maintenance, or child custody in a context where one of the people involved is of Greek descent, Greek family law will usually come into play. This situation is very common today, as families are increasingly international and made up of people of different nationalities who, perhaps, marry in a different country than their country of origin.

Since, unfortunately, the law has not become as global as people’s, profound differences remain between the laws of different countries. As a result, family law varies greatly from one nation to another. In cases where family issues occur within an international couple, it is important to understand which laws apply in divorce, spousal maintenance, or child custody.

In some cases, the decision as to which court should hear the case can lead to very different outcomes and thus have serious consequences for the case’s progress.

As lawyers experienced in international family law cases, we will ensure that you get the most out of your separation and can move on with your new life phase without worries.

Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us to talk about your Family Law needs.

Thessaloniki
+30 2310 284408

Berlin
+49 30 88702382

conta[email protected]

Our Family Law Services

We are here to help you deal with Family Law matters when Greek law is involved

Our law firm is particularly experienced in handling international separation, divorce, alimony and child custody cases involving international families and Greek family law. In addition, we are experienced in drafting and negotiating separation agreements and representing our client’s interests in consensual and contested divorce litigation.

We are here to help and advise you throughout the proceedings with our international and Greek family law services.

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International Marriage

When entering a legally recognized marriage, there may be some administrative challenges. The future happy couple will want to make sure that the marriage is recognized in the countries of interest and that their marriage confers upon them the benefits that they think are the attributes of legal matrimony (e.g., citizenship, recognition of children by both countries).

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Consensual Divorce

The best way to handle a divorce is generally to reach an out-of-court settlement, a consensual separation agreement between the parties. Although this presupposes a willingness to compromise and avoid conflict, it generally brings the most benefits, especially in the long run.

We can negotiate an out-of-court separation agreement by involving your partner in the process or negotiating with the lawyer representing him or her.

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Divorce Litigation

We know that reaching an out-of-court settlement is not always achievable, nor is it always the right way to proceed. Indeed, when a divorce agreement cannot be reached by mutual consent, we are ready to defend your interests before a family law court and ensure you will get the most out of your divorce.

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Alimony

Alimony is the financial support that one partner gives the other so that the supported partner can maintain a certain quality of life. Financial support can take many forms (e.g., tuition payments, property ownership, monthly payments). The form(s) paid to the supported partner and the amount paid can be determined by the couple with legal assistance or by the lawyers representing them. Regardless, both people should consult with a lawyer to ensure that the alimony is fair and just.

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Child Custody & Right to Access

The best interests of children and their legal guardians can be lost in the conflicts that erupt when a family is torn apart. Although lawyers cannot decide what is necessary for the best interests of children, they can help legal guardians (and sometimes children) fight for access to family members: good lawyers are needed to sort things out and create an agreement that addresses the needs of all the parties involved in the legal action. If the legal guardians cannot decide on the terms of visitation, then the courts will have to decide for them.

This becomes especially difficult when the legal guardians live in different countries or one is located some distance from the other. The courts must decide what is in the child’s best interests and the parent’s rights in such cases.

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Paternity Issues

Paternity issues are serious business. Children have a right to receive financial support from both of their parents. If there is any uncertainty about the biological father of a child, it should be settled before that man is required to pay child support payments for the child that may or may not be his offspring. Moreover, paternity issues are very important when it comes to writing wills and testaments and making long-term financial plans.

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Matrimonial Property Issues

When marriages are dissolved, the couple will probably disagree on how their assets should be split. For example, it may be better for them to sell their property and split the proceeds than to co-own it and try to manage it together.

Moreover, there is likely to be disagreement over what is a fair split of the property, especially if one of the partners entered the relationship with substantially less valuable assets than the other marital partner.

Contact a family lawyer to discuss your property rights and how you can protect them. Division of marital assets is often contentious, and you don’t want to be caught by surprise during the property settlement negotiations.

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Non-Marital Partners/Co-Habitation

As more people choose not to marry and instead live together, there is a greater need for these couples to have legal representation when they break up. Since marital law may not cover their living arrangement or protect their interests, non-marital partners should seek legal assistance in order to understand what legal rights they have and how to enforce them.

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Adoption

Whether you are adopting a child who is local or foreign, you will need legal assistance to process the paperwork and make sure that your rights as the child’s legal guardian are protected. Also, there are different types of adoptions, so you will want to know what the birth parents expect, the law allows, and your rights.

Moreover, you will want to make sure that the adoption is legal and recognized by your country. If you are adopting your spouse’s child, you should also consult a lawyer. When you adopt your spouse’s child, you need to know what is expected of you legally and the potential problems that you may face if you adopt the child.

Divorce concept: Wedding rings and wooden gavel viewed from the top

Frequently Asked Questions

Greek family law and international family issues: read the FAQ

I am married to a Greek person, and I want to get a divorce. We live abroad. Does Greek family law affect the proceedings?

Yes. If either spouse is Greek, Greek family law affects the proceedings. International divorce cases may be complex; don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss your situation in more detail. If the divorce is by mutual consent, we can also arrange a meeting with both spouses to address the matter most appropriately.

I am married and want to file for divorce, but the situation is difficult now. Can I just leave, taking the children with me?

Unfortunately, this is not recommended because you risk exposing yourself to serious legal consequences. Contact us immediately so we can assess your specific case and provide you with legal coverage.

According to a court ruling, my spouse is obligated to pay monthly alimony and support our son, but he is not doing so. Can you help me?

Yes. Unfortunately, this situation happens often, and many people come to us with the same problem. We can take action so that your rights are protected.

We are getting divorced, and my spouse has left for Greece taking my children with him. I want custody or to have access rights recognized. What should I do?

Contact us now; we will assist you in obtaining custody of your children if they have been taken to Greece.

I am getting divorced and have a joint bank account with my spouse. Can I withdraw money without his authorization?

Technically speaking you can if your name is on the account, but this decision could have serious legal consequences and bring more problems than benefits. Contact us immediately to assess your situation and determine if there are grounds to transfer the money safely.

My ex-spouse is claiming alimony and child support, and he is claiming some property we purchased together. Can you help me?

Yes. Unfortunately, this is also a very common case when going through a divorce, and it often happens that an attorney has to intervene. That is why we are very experienced in advising you and negotiating the best terms you can get.

I am getting divorced. My spouse left and went to Greece after the court ruled that he had to pay me alimony. Can you help me?

Yes, as international lawyers, we can help you to have your rights recognized against your spouse who has gone to Greece, regardless of where you reside or are.

I have a child with a Greek person, but the father refuses to acknowledge him. Can you help me?

Yes, as experienced Greek family law attorneys, we also handle cases related to paternity acknowledgment and property claims. Please get in touch with us to better assess your situation.

Keep this in Mind!

What to know about Greek Family Law

Family law in Greece

Family law in Greece is that branch of law that regulates the personal and patrimonial relationships between persons bound by marriage or kinship. Therefore, some of the matters regulated by Greek family law concern engagement, marriage, separation, divorce, alimony, custody, relations between parents and children, and adoption.

As in any legal system, family law in Greece is closely related to other areas of law. Indeed, legal issues arising within a family often have to do with goods and property, questions of inheritance law or criminal law.

The Greek constitution regards the family as the cornerstone for the preservation and promotion of the nation. For this reason, the rules of law in Greece have a protective interest in the family. Therefore, Greek family law is often strict, and its rules cannot be derogated, even if all parties agree to do so.

Divorce in Greece

Divorce proceedings in Greece are opened by filing a divorce petition with the family court. The marriage is then considered dissolved once the order of dissolution of marriage pronounced by the court becomes final.

Greek family law provides for two types of divorce: divorce by mutual consent (when both spouses wish the marriage to end) and contentious divorce (when only one of the spouses wishes to proceed with the dissolution of the marriage).

In the case of a divorce by mutual consent, the court does not examine the reason for the break-up of the marriage but only the fulfillment of the legal requirements: the presence of a written agreement on the dissolution of the marriage signed by the spouses and their lawyers, the presence of a written agreement on custody rights and access to the children if there are any, and the duration of the marriage of at least six months.

In the case of a contentious divorce, on the other hand, the spouse initiating legal proceedings against the other spouse must specify the reason for which dissolution of the marriage is sought. The law irrefutably presumes a strong aggravation of the marriage in cases of bigamy, adultery, abandonment of the spouse, domestic violence, and intrigues against the spouse’s life.

Divorce in Greece may also occur by separation, i.e., when the couple has been separated continuously for at least two years.

Alimony in Greece

Greek law on spousal maintenance provides that it is only payable exceptionally and for special reasons.

A person is entitled to receive maintenance when he or she cannot work properly or has no income or assets to guarantee maintenance. At the same time, the person liable to pay maintenance must be able to do so without endangering his or her maintenance.

Maintenance may be excluded or reduced in certain cases and is no longer due if the person receiving it remarries or lives in a union.

Right of access in Greece

In Greece, family law provides that the non-custodial parent retains the right of access, i.e., the right to see his or her child and to participate actively in his or her life. The parent who has obtained custody of the child after the divorce is obliged not to prevent contact with the other parent.

The right of access in Greece can be established by the parents’ agreement or court order.

Child maintenance in Greece

Greek law stipulates that parents have a joint duty of maintenance towards their children, each according to his or her capacity.

The parent who has been awarded custody of the child following separation or divorce has the right to seek maintenance from the other parent on behalf of the child, usually paid monthly.

As in other legal systems, child maintenance in Greece is based on the child’s needs in life, and the amount set generally takes into account food, clothing, education, sports and recreational activities, and medical care.

* The information on this site is provided for the sole purpose of illustrating the subject matter. It in no way constitutes legal advice nor a substitute for individual legal advice provided by counsel. Each case is unique, presents unique circumstances, and should be evaluated in detail by an attorney who will verify its specific circumstances.

We help you deal with your family law issues

Please write or call us if you are looking for an expert Greek family law lawyer.
We are here to advise you and take care of your legal needs in Greece.

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+30 2310 284408 (Thessaloniki)

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+49 30 88702382 (Berlin)