Typically, judgment No. 04/2018/HNGĐ-ST dated April 20, 2018 on "Divorce, common debt dispute" was a first-instance trial by the People's Court of Mai Chau district, Hoa Binh province:
“She and Mr. Vi Van L voluntarily got married and were granted a marriage certificate by the People's Committee of M commune, M district, Hoa Binh province on August 26, 2014. After getting married, the couple lived with the husband's family in D hamlet, M commune, district M. The process of living together around August 2017, a conflict arose, caused by Mr. L often being jealous for no reason. Mrs. M's clothes and blankets were burned, leading to a serious and prolonged conflict. Ms. M left her parents' house in Xom H, M commune, M district, Hoa Binh province and has been living separately from Mr. Vi Van L until now. She realized that the husband and wife's feelings no longer existed, so she made an application to the Court to grant her a divorce from Mr. Vi Van L. Regarding common children and common property: Currently there is no
Regarding joint debt: Ms. and Mr. L owe the transaction office of Social Policy Bank of Mai Chau district an amount of VND 30,000,000 and the remaining interest. Request the Court to recognize according to the minutes of asset division agreement made on January 13, 2018 specifically: Each person must pay the principal amount of VND 15,000,000 and the remaining interest when the debt is due on April 21, 2019. Besides that, she don't ask for any further suggestions."
According to Article 37 of the Law on Marriage and Family 2014 of Vietnam, the common property obligations of husband and wife are as follows:
Article 37. Common property obligations of husband and wife
Husband and wife have the following common property obligations:
1. Obligations arising from transactions established under their agreement, obligations to pay damages under their joint liability as prescribed by law;
2. Obligations performed by a spouse in order to meet the family’s essential needs;
3. Obligations arising from the possession, use and disposition of common property;
4. Obligations arising from the use of separate property for maintaining and developing common property or for generating major incomes for the family;
5. Obligations to pay damages caused by their children as prescribed by the Civil Code;
6. Other obligations as prescribed by relevant laws.
Joint responsibilities of husband and wife for transactions performed by one party are specified in Article 27 of the Law on Marriage and Family as follows:
Article 27. Joint liability of husband and wife
1. Husband and wife shall take joint liability for transactions prescribed in Clause 1, Article 30, which are made by either of them, or other transactions made in conformity with provisions on representation of Articles 24, 25 and 26, of this Law.
2. Husband and wife shall take joint liability for the obligations prescribed in Article of this Law.
Article 60 of the Law on Marriage and Family provides for settlement of property rights and obligations of husband and wife towards a third party upon divorce as follows:
Compared with the provisions of the law, if the loan is to meet essential living needs such as spending on family living, doing business together, repairing houses, taking care of children, etc. Both husband and wife are responsible for this debt, even if the husband or wife borrows in their name, they must also be jointly responsible for paying the debt upon divorce.
The court heard about joint debt in the case as follows: “Ms. M and Mr. L have made a written agreement on asset division, specifically, husband and wife each pay 15,000,000 VND of principal and interest. The representative of the transaction office of the Social Policy Bank of District M commented that they agreed on the content of the agreement, but required Ms. M and Mr. L to pay off all debts before settling for divorce. Considering that the transaction office of the Bank for Social Policies of Mai Chau district does not have an independent request for the loan of Mr. L and Ms. M.
Regarding the loan that is not yet due, the final repayment deadline is April 21, 2019, this amount is borrowed to raise cows, but due to the epidemic, Ms. M and L is unable to repay the loan before the due date. Therefore, it is necessary to accept the agreement of Ms. M and L, each party must pay the principal amount of VND 15,000,000 and the unpaid interest to the Bank when the debt is due. Pursuant to Article 37 of the Law on Marriage and Family; Articles 463 and 466 of the 2015 Civil Code .” The loan from the policy bank in Mai Chau district of Ms. M and Mr. L used to raise cows and improve the family economy should be considered a common debt during the marriage period.
Therefore, the obligations arising from the transaction established by the husband and wife's agreement or the obligation to compensate for damage are jointly liable. Obligations performed by spouses to meet the essential needs of the family are considered joint property obligations, includes both joint assets and joint liabilities.
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