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Bonds Of Relationship By Consanguinity And By Affinity

BOOK  II. FAMILY AND SUCCESSIONS
TITLE IV. BONDS OF RELATIONSHIP BY CONSANGUINITY AND BY AFFINITY
Chapter 1. Relationship by consanguinity and by affinity in general

Art. 550.-  Natural relationship.

(1)    Bonds of natural relationship derive from community of blood.
(2)    A bond of relationship by consanguinity exists, in the direct line between ascendants and descendants.
(3)    In the collateral line, it exists between persons who descend from one or more common ascendants.

Art. 551.- Degree of relationship by consanguinity.

(1)    The degree of relationship by consanguinity in the collateral line shall be calculated by counting seven generations in each line from the common ancestor.
(2)    Relationship by consanguinity shall be off no effect beyond the seventh generation.

Art. 552.- Affinity.

(1)    Bonds of affinity derive from marriage.
(2)    A bond of affinity exists, in the direct line, between a person and the ascendants or descendants of the spouse.
(3)    In the collateral line, it exists between a  person and the collaterals of his spouse.

Art. 553.- Limitation up to third degree.

Affinity shall be of no effect beyond the third degree the collateral line.

Art. 554.- Double affinity.

(1)    A bond of double affinity exists between a person and the spouse of the persons to whom he is related by affinity.
(2)    Such bound of double affinity shall produce the same effect as a and of simple affinity.
Art. 555.- Cessation of affinity.
A bond of affinity shall subsist in the direct and collateral line notwithstanding that the marriage by which it was created is dissolved.

Art. 556.- Relationship by adoption. 1. Principle.

Bonds of consanguinity and affinity may be created by a contract of adoption, in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 11 of this Title (Art. 976-806).

Art. 557.- 2. Effects.

Without prejudice to the provisions of Art. 558 an adopted child shall for all purposes be deemed to the a child of the adopter.

Art. 558.- 3. Saving clauses.

(1)    Adoption shall be of no effect with regard to the ascendants or collaterals of the adopter who have expressly declared to the opposed to the adoption.
(2)    The declaration referred to in sub-art. (1) shall be of no effect  unless it is registered with a notary or in a court registry within one year from the approval of  the contract of adoption.
(3)    It shall produce effect in regard to the spouse and he descendants of the person making it.

Art. 559.- Family of origin.

(1)    The adopted child shall retain his bonds with his family of  origin.
(2)    The small shall apply to the spouse and the descendants of the adoption and the family of origin, the family of adoption shall prevail.

Chapter 2. Betrothal

Art. 560.- Definition.

(1)    A contract of betrothal is a contract whereby two members of two families agree that a marriage shall take place between two  persons, the finance and the finance, belonging to these two families.
(2)    Betrothal shall be of no effect unless the family of each of the future spouses consent thereto.

Art. 561.- Simple promise of marriage.

(1)    A simple  promise of marriage, exchanged between two persons, shall not constitute a betrothal.
(2)    The breach of such promise may give rise to damages in cases of fault in accordance  with the provisions of the Title of this Code relating to “Extra-contractual liability and unlawful enrichment”.

Art. 562.- Representative of the family.1-. First marriage.

For the spouse who contracts a first marriage, the following persons shall be deemed to be the representative of the family:
(a)    the father of such spouse:
(b)    in the default or if he is not in a position to give his consent, the mother;
(c)    in her default or if she is not in a position to give his consent, an elder brother or a paternal or maternal uncle.

Art. 563.- 2. Subsequent marriage.

Any of the persons mentioned in Art. 562 may consent to the betrothal in his capacity as representative of the family, when it is contracted by a person who has been previously married.

Art. 564.- 3. Absence of legal representative.

(1)    Where either of the future spouses has no ascendants, elder brother or paternal or maternal uncle who may represent the family, he may appoint a person to act as representative of his family, he may appoint a person to act as representative of his family for his betrothal.
(2)    The same shall apply to future spouses, where the  finance is more than thirty years of  age or the fiancée is more than twenty-five years of age.

Art. 565.- Consent of betrothed couple.

Betrothal shall be of no effect unless both future spouses consent thereto.

Art. 566.- Existence of obstacle to marriage.

(1)    Betrothal shall be of no effect unless there is no legal obstacle to thee marriage of the future spouses.
(2)    In particular, it shall be of no effect until both  future spouses attain the marriageable age required by law.

Art. 567.- Form of betrothal.

The form of betrothal shall be regulated by the usage of the place where it is celebrated.

Art. 568.- Witnesses.

(1)    A contract of betrothal shall be of no effect unless it is made in the presence  of two witnesses for the future bridegroom and two witnesses for the future birds.
(2)    One of the witnesses for the bridegroom and one of the witnesses for the bride may have the character of principal witness.

Art. 569.- Proof to betrothal.

(1)    Betrothal need  not be entered in  the  registers of civil status.
(2)    It may be proved by all means of evidence.

Art. 570.- Duration of betrothal.

If, at thee time of the betrothal, no period has been agreed upon for the celebration of the marriage, the marriage shall take place within six months from  either of the future spouses or the authorized representative of their family having expressed his or her wish that the marriage be celebrated.

Art. 571.- Breach of betrothal.

(1)    Betrothal shall be broken if either of the future spouses of another person who had consented thereto, refuse to consent to the marriage, without a good cause justifying his delay or his refusal.
(2)    It shall also be broken if either of the future spouses or a person who has given his consent to the betrothal, behaves in such a way that the marriage is rendered, in fact or morally, impossible.

Art. 572.- Effects of breach.- 1. Expenses and restitution.

(1)    The person who is responsible for the breach of betrothal shall pay all the expenses incurred in connection with the betrothal.
(2)    Presents received on the occasion  of the betrothal shall be returned by the person who is responsible for the breach as well as by the members of his family.

Art. 573.- 2. Moral prejudice.

(1)    A reasonable compensation  may be awarded to the finance or the fiancée who is not responsible for the breach, or to his or her family, in compensation of the moral prejudice cased by the breach of betrothal.
(2)     In establishing the amount of the indemnity and who is qualified for requiring it, the court shall have regard to local custom.
(3)    The indemnity awarded in compensation of moral prejudice may not exceed one thousand Ethiopia dollars.

Art. 574.- 3.  Penalty,

(1)    If a penalty clause has been attached to the betrothal, the person responsible for the breach of the betrothal shall pay the agreed amount.
(2)    Such amount may be reduced having regard to the circumstances of the case.
(3)    It may be reduced where it appears that it is manifestly  exaggerated.

Art. 575.- Opposition of ascendants.

(1)    A breach of betrothal shall give rise to no liability where an ascendant of one of the future spouses has not expressly consented to the betrothal and apposes to the marriage.
(2)    The presents received by both parties shall then be returned.

Art. 576.- Limitation.

All actions based on breach of betrothal shall be barred if not instituted within one year from the day when the betrothal has been broken.

Chapter 3. Conclusion of marriage

Art. 577.- Various kinds of marriages.

(1)    Marriage may be contracted before an officer of civil status.
(2)    Marriages contracted according to the religion of the parties or to local custom shall also be valid under this Code.

Art. 578.- Civil marriage.

A civil marriage shall take place when a man and a woman have appeared before the officer of civil status for the purpose of contracting marriage and the officer of civil status received their respective consent.

Art. 579.- Religious marriage.

A religious marriage shall take place when a man and a woman have performed such acts or rites as are deemed to constitute a valid marriage by their religion or the religion of one of them.

Art. 580.- Marriage according to custom.

A customary marriage shall take place when a man and  a woman perform such rites as constitute a permanent union between such man and woman under the rules of the community too which they belong or to which one of them belongs.
Section  1. Conditions common to all forms of marriage

Art. 581.- Age.

(1)    A man who has not attained the full age of eighteen years and a woman who has not attained the full age of fifteen years may not contract marriage.
(2)    His Majesty the Emperor of Ethiopia or a person specially appointed by Him for the purpose may, for good cause, grant dispensations

Art. 582.- Consanguinity.

Marriage between persons related by consanguinity is prohibited.

Art. 583.- Affinity.

Marriage between persons related by affinity is prohibited.

Art. 584.- Filiation not established legally.

The existence of a bond of natural filiation which is commonly known is sufficient to render applicable the impediments to marriage referred to in Art. 582 and 583 notwithstanding that the filiation is not established legally.

Art. 585.- Bigamy.

A person may not contract marriage so long as he is bound by the bounds of a preceding marriage.

Art. 586.- Representation not allowed.

(1)    Each of the spouses shall personally consent to the marriage at the time of its celebration.
(2)    Representation shall not be allowed unless a dispensation be given for good cause by the Advocate General.

Art. 587.- Marriage of minors.

The conditions on which a minor may contract marriage are laid down in the Title of this Code relating to “Capacity of Persons” (Art. 309).

Art. 588.- Judicially interdicted persons.

The conditions on which a judicially interdicted person may contract marriage are laid down in the Title of this Code relating to “Capacity of Persons” (Art. 369).

Art. 589.- Violence.

(1)    No consent shall be valid which has been extorted by violence.
(2)    Violence shall be deemed to have occurred where consent it given only with a view to protecting  the person who has given it, or one of his ascendants or one of his descendants, form a menace of a grave and imminent evil.
(3)    Violence shall not be deemed to have occurred where consent is prompted by reverential fear towards an ascendant or another person.

Art. 590.- Error of substance.-1. Principle.

Consent shall be vitiated where it was given only as a result of an error of substance of one of the spouses on the person of his spouse.

Art. 591.- 2.  Restrictive enumeration.

The following errors only shall be considered as errors of substance;
(a)    error on the identity of the spouse, who is not the person with whom a person intended  to contract marriage;
(b)    error on the religion of the spouse, who does not belong to the same faith as the spouse who is the victim of the error;
(c)    error on the state of health or the bodily conformation of the spouse,  who  is affected by leprosy or who does not have the requisite organs  for the consummation of the marriage.

Art. 592.- Opposition.- 1. By whom made.

(1)    Opposition to the marriage may be made by the person mentioned in Art. 562 or by the guardian of the spouse who is a minor.
(2)    Opposition may also be made by the public prosecutor.
(3)    Opposition  may be made by no other person.

Art. 593.- 2. Time and form

(1)    Opposition shall be made at the latest when the marriage is celebrated.
(2)    It shall be subject to no special form.

Art. 594.- 3. Withdrawal of opposition.

(1)    The withdrawal of the opposition to the marriage may be required by either of the spouses notwithstanding that he or she is a minor.
(2)    No appeal shall lie against the opposition made by the father for the  mother of one of the future spouses, when the person to whose marriage  opposition is made  is under twenty years of age.

Art. 595.- 4. Impossibility

(1)    No opposition may be made to  marriage, when the withdrawal of a previous opposition made to such marriage has been ordered by the court.
(2)    No opposition may be made, except by the public prosecutor, to the marriage of a person who has been previously married.

Art. 596.- Period  of widowhood.

(1)    A woman may not remarry unless one hundred and eighty days have elapsed since he dissolution of a previous marriage or irregular union.
(2)    The provisions  of sub-art.(1) shall not apply where the woman gives birth to a child after the dissolution of such union.
(3)    The court may dispense a woman form observing a period of widowhood.

Section 2. Civil marriage

Art. 597.- Competent officer of civil  status.

Civil marriages shall be  celebrated before the officer of civil status of the commune where one of the souses, or one of his parents or ascendants, has his residence established by continuously living there for not  less than six months prior to the date of the marriage.

Art. 598.- Undertaking not marry.

(1)    Any undertaking made by an person not to marry or not to remarry shall be of no effect.
(2)    The officer of civil status shall not take it into consideration.

Art. 599.- Request for celebration of marriage, 

The future spouses shall inform not less than one week in advance the officer of civil status of their intention to contract marriage.

Art. 600.- Refusal to celebrate marriage.

(1)    The officer off civil status shall ascertain that the conditions of marriage are satisfied.
(2)    He shall refuse to celebrate the marriage if he finds or has good reasons to believe that there exists an obstacle to the marriage.
(3)    In such case, the officer of civil status shall give the reason of his refusal to the future spouses.

Art. 601.- Appeal against refusal.

(1)    Either of the spouses may appeal against a refusal under Art. 600 to the court which shall decide whether such refusal is justified or not.
(2)    Where the court finds the refusal of the officer of civil status to be unjustified, such officer may not refuse to celebrate the marriage for any reason whatever.

Art. 602.- Fixing date of marriage.

The exact date of the celebration of the marriage shall be fixed by agreement between the future spouses and officer of civil status.

Art. 603.- Publicity of marriage.

Marriage shall be celebrated publicity, in the presence of the future spouses and of two witnesses for each of the future spouses.

Art. 604.- Formalities of celebration.

(1)    The future spouses and  the witnesses shall taken an oath that, to their knowledge, there exists no obstacle to the marriage.
(2)    The officer of civil status shall receive from each of the future spouses, one after the other, a declaration that they want to take one another as husband and wife.
(3)    In the name of the law, he shall pronounce them united n marriages and shall immediately draw  up the record of marriage, if he is qualified to do so.

Section 3. Other marriages

Art. 605.- Religious marriage.

(1)    The conditions on which a religious marriage may be celebrated and the formalities of such celebration shall be as prescribed by the religion  of the parties concerned.
(2)    The provisions of this Code relating to the conditions common  to all forms of marriage shall be complied with in all cases (Art. 581-596).
(3)    A record of marriage shall be drawn up in accordance with the provisions of the Title of this  Code relating to “Physical persons” (Art. 47-120)

Art. 6-6.- Marriage according to custom.

(1)    The conditions on which a marriage according to custom may be celebrated and the formalities of such celebration shall be as prescribed by local custom.
(2)    The provisions of this Code  relating to the conditions common to all forms of marriage shall be complied within al cases (Art. 581-596).
(3)    A record of marriage shall be drawn up in accordance wit the provisions of the Title of this Code relating to “Physical persons” (Art. 47-120)

Chapter 4. Sanction of the conditions of marriage

Section 1. Conditions common to all forms of marriage.

Art. 607.- Age – 1. Criminal sanction.

(1)    An officer of civil status or authority having celebrated the marriage of a man under eighteen years of age or a woman under fifteen years of age shall be liable to the punishments provided in the  Penal Code if he knew or should have known such circumstances.
(2)    The bridegroom  or the bridge or the bride who is madder eighteen or fifteen years of age respectively, the persons who have consented to the marriage and the witness shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code.

Art. 608.- 2. Dissolution of marriage.

(1)    The dissolution of the marriage shall be ordered in the a case mentioned in Art. 607 on the application of any interested person or of the public prosecutor.
(2)    It may no longer be applied for after the conditions of age required by law for marriage are satisfied.

Art. 609.- Consanguinity or affinity – 1. Dissolution of marriage.

The dissolution of a marriage celebrated notwithstanding an impediment arising out of consanguinity or of affinity shall be ordered on  the application of any interested person or of the public prosecutor.

Art. 610.- 2. Criminal  sanction.

(1)    An officer of civil status or authority having celebrated a marriage between two persons, notwithstanding an impediment arising out of consanguinity or of affinity, shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code, if he knew or should have known of such circumstance.
(2)    The spouses, the persons who have consented to the marriage and the witness shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code, if they knew or should have known  of the bond of consanguinity or of affinity.
(3)    The punishments referred to in sub-arts. (1) and (2) shall not apply unless the dissolution of the marriage has been ordered  by the court.

Art. 611.- Bigamy. – 1. Criminal sanction.

(1)    An officer of civil status or authority having celebrated the marriage of a person bound by the bounds of a previous marriage, shall be liable to the punishments  provided in the Penal Code, if he knew or should have known of such circumstance.
(2)    The spouses, the persons who have consented to the marriage and the witnesses shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code, if they knew or should have known of such circumstance.

Art. 612.- 2. Dissolution of marriage.

(1)    In the case mentioned in Art. 611 the dissolution of the marriage shall be ordered, on the application of either of the spouses of the bigamous spouse or on the request of the public prosecutor.
(2)    The court shall not order dissolution unless it is established, in an indisputable manner, that the former spouse of the bigamous spouse was alive at the time when the marriage was celebrated.

Art. 613.- 3. Validation.

The marriage contracted by the bigamous spouse shall become valid on the day when the  former spouse dies.

Art. 614.- Marriage of  incapacitated person. – 1. Criminal sanction.

(1)    An officer of civil status or authority having celebrated the marriage of a minor or of an interdicted person without the necessary authorizations shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code, if he knew or should have known that the spouse was a minor or an interdicted person.
(2)    The spouse of such minor or interdicted person and the witnesses shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code.

Art. 615.- Dissolution of marriage.

(1)    The dissolution of the marriage may be requested from the court by a minor or by an insane person who is interdicted or by a person who should have consented to the marriage of the minor or by the guardian of the interdicted person.
(2)    An application for dissolution may no longer be made by the incapacitated person six months after the termination of his disability.
(3)    It may no longer be made by the other persons six months after the day on which they came to know of the existence of the marriage and, in any case, when the disability of the minor of interdicted person has ceased.

Art. 616.- Defect of violence. – 1. Criminal sanction.

(1)    Whosoever by violence forced a person to consent to a marriage and  the witnesses of such marriage shall be liable to the punishment provide into the penal Code.
(2)    An officer of civil status or authority having celebrated such marriage shall be liable to the punishments provide in the Penal Code, if he knew or should have known of such circumstance.
Art. 617.- 2. Dissolution to marriage.
(1)    A person who has contracted a marriage under the influence of violence may apply  to the court to order the dissolution  thereof.
(2)    Such application may not be made six months after  the cessation of such violence and, in any case, two years after the celebration of the marriage.

Art. 618.-Error.

(1)    Whosoever has contracted a marriage under the influence of an error of substance may apply to the court to order the  dissolution  thereof.
(2)    Such application may not be made six months after the discovery of such error, and, in any case,  two years after the celebration of the marriage.

Art. 619.- Opposition.

(1)    An officer of civil status or authority having celebrated a marriage notwithstanding an opposition validly made to such marriage (Art. 592-594), shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code.
(2)     The spouses who are over eighteen years of age, he persons who have consented to the marriage and he witnesses shall be liable to the punishments provide in the Penal Code.
(3)    The dissolution of the marriage may not be ordered for the sole reason that an  opposition has not been taken into consideration.

Art. 620.- Period of widowhood.

(1)    As officer of civil status or authority having celebrated the marriage of a woman before the expiration of the period of widowhood (Art. 596) shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code.
(2)    The spouses, the persons who have consented to the marriage and the witnesses shall be liable to the punishments provide in the Penal Code.
(3)    The dissolution of the marriage may not be ordered for the sole reason that the period of widowhood has not been observed.

Section 2. Civil Marriage

Art. 621.- Incompetence of officer of civil status.

(1)    An officer of civil status who celebrates a marriage when the condition of residence required by the Code is not satisfied.(Art. 597)  shall be liable to the punishments provide in  the Penal Code, if he know or should have known of such circumstance.
(2)    The spouses and the witnesses of such marriage shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code.
(3)    The dissolution of the marriage may not be ordered solely on the ground of incompetence of the officer of civil status.

Art. 622.- Non-observance of formalities.

(1)    An office of civil status who celebrates a marriage without observing the provisions  relating to such celebration (Art. 603 and 604) shall be liable to the punishments provided in the Penal Code.
(2)    The dissolution of the marriage may not be ordered on the ground of such circumstances.

Section 3. Other Marriages.

Art. 623.- Nullity.

(1)    The annulment of a marriage may not be  ordered by the court on the ground that some conditions or formalities required by religion or by custom have not been observed.
(2)    The annulment of  a religious marriage ordered by the religious authorities shall only constitute a serious ground for divorce.
(3)    The annulment of a marriage according to custom ordered by the customary authorities shall be of no legal effect.

Art. 624.- Fine and damages.

(1)    The conditions and formalities required in the case of a religious marriage or of a marriage according to custom may be sanctioned by a condemnation to a fine or by a condemnation to pay damage to the injured party, according to the religion or custom concerned.
(2)    Notwithstanding any custom or stipulation to the contrary, the court may reduce the amount of such fine or damages as are due where such amount appears to it to be excessive.
(3)    It may also refuse to give effect to the custom relating to such matter if it appears to it to be unreasonable or country to equity or to morality.

Chapter 5. Effects of Marriage.
 Section 1.General rules

Art. 625.- Various forms of marriage equivalent.

(1)    Marriage produces the same legal  effects,  whatever the  form according to  which it has been celebrated.
(2)    No distinction shall be made as to whether the marriage has been celebrated before an officer of civil status or according to the forms prescribed by  religion or custom.

Art. 626.- Consummation of marriage.

The effect of marriage shall in no way depend on the real or presumed consummation of the marriage.

Art. 627.- Contract of marriage.

(1)    The spouses may, before their marriage, regulate by a contract of marriage the pecuniary effects of their union.
(2)     They may also specify in such contract their reciprocal rights and obligations in matters concerning their personal relations.
(3)    Nothing in this Article shall affect the mandatory provisions of the law.

Art. 628.-  Incapacity of a spouse.

(1)    The consent of the minor and of the tutor shall be required for making the contract of marriage of a minor.
(2)    The contract of marriage of a judicially interdicted  person shall be of no effect unless it is entered  into by the interdicted person himself and approved by the court.
(3)    As regards the making of a contract of marriage, a person interdicted by law shall  be subject to no incapacity.

Art  629.- From of contract.

A contract of marriage shall be of no effect unless made in writing and witnessed  by four witnesses, two for the husband and two for the wife .

Art. 630.-Depsit of contract.

(1)    A copy of the contract of marriage shall be deposited in the registry of the court or with a notary.
(2)    It may be freely consulted thereby any one of the spouses or by any person authorized for this purpose by the spouses or by the court.

Art. 631.-  Restrictions to freedom of contracting.

(1)    A contract of marriage may not impose and obligation upon third parties nor derogate any mandatory provisions of law.

Art. 631.- Restrictions to freedom of contacting.

(1)    A contract of marriage may not impose an obligation upon third parties nor derogate nay mandatory provisions of law.
(2)    It may not refer  purely and simply to local custom.

Art. 632.- Modifications to contract of marriage.

(1)    The family arbitrators may, at  the request of both spouses, modify the terms of the contact of marriage.
(2)    The arbitrators may, at the request of one of the spouse only ,modify such terms if the interest of the family so requires.
(3)    A copy of the modifications  made shall be deposited in the registry of the court or with a notary.

Art. 633.- Contracts between spouses.

(1)    Contracts made between spouses during marriage shall be of no effect under the law, unless they above been approved by the family arbitrators or by the court.
(2)    Nothing in this Article shall affect the  specific provisions of this Code relating to  contracts.

Art. 634.-  Legal regime.

Where there is no contract or the provisions of the contract of marriages or of the contract made between the spouses are not valid, the following provisions shall apply.

Section 2. Personal effects of marriage

Art. 63.- Head of the family.

(1)    The husband is the head of the family.
(2)    Unless otherwise expressly provide by this Code, the wife owes him obedience in all lawful things which the orders.

Art. 636.- Respect, support and assistance.

(1)    The spouses owe each other respect, support and assistance.
(2)    The contract of marriage may not derogate such rule.

Art. 637.- Management of family. – 1. General case.

(1)    The spouses shall co-operate, under the guidance of the husband, in the interest of the family, to ensure the moral and material direction of the family, to bring up the children and to prepares for their establishment.
(2)    The undertakings made by the spouses in this regard in the contract of marriage shall be given effect to.

Art. 638.- 2.  Impediment of one spouse.

(1)    Where one of the spouses is under a disability, absent or condemned for abandoning his family, the other shall carry out the duties mentioned in Art. 637.-
(2)    The same shall apply where one of the spouses voluntarily abandous life in common or is not in a state of manifesting his will by reason of his being away or for any other cases.
(3)    Any provision to the contrary in the contract of marriage shall be of no effect.

Art. 639.- Children of previous marriage.

(1)    Each of  the spouses shall retain an exclusive right of decision is maters concerning the education of the children whom he had before the marriage.
(2)    Any agreement to the contrary shall be  of no effect.

Art. 640.- Cohabitation.

(1)    The spouses are bound to live together.
(2)    They shall have with one another the sexual relations normal in marriage, unless these relations involve a risk of seriously  prejudicing their health.
(3)    Any agreement to the contrary shall be of no effect.

Art. 641.- Establishment of residence.

(1)    The common residence shall be chosen by the husband.
(2)    Where there residence is established by  the husband in a manner which ins manifestly abusive or contrary  to the  agreements  in the contract of marriage, the wife may appeal to the family arbitrators against the decision of he husband.

Art. 642.-  Separation by agreement.

Section  3. Pecuniary effects of marriage

Art. 647- Personal property of  spouses.- 1. Property not acquired by onerous title.

The property which the spouses posses on the day of their marriage or which they acquire after their marriage by succession or donation shall remain their personal property.

Art. 648.- 2. Property acquired by onerous title.

(1)    Property acquired  by an onerous title by one of the spouses during marriage shall also be personal property of such  spouse where such acquisition has been made by exchange for property owned personally or with monies owned personally or deriving from the alienation of property owned personally.
(2)    The provisions of sub-art. (1) shall not apply unless the family arbitrators, at the request of one of the spouses, have decided that the property thus acquired shall be owned personally by such spouse.

Art. 649.- A administration of personal property. – 1. Principle.

(1)    Each spouse shall administer his personal property and receive the income thereof.
(2)    He may freely dispose of  his property.

Art. 650.- 2. Contract of marriage.

(1)    It may be agreed in the contract of marriage that one of the spouses shall administer the property or certain property of the other spouses shall administer the property of certain property of the other spouse and that he may dispose of such property.
(2)    Unless otherwise agreed, an annual statement of accounts of the  management may in such case be required by the spouse who has not the administration of his property.

Art. 651.- 3. Agency.

One of the spouses may freely entrust to his spouse the administration of his property or some of this personal property.

Art. 652.- Common property.

(1)    The salaries and the income of the spouses shall be common property.
(2)    All property acquired by the spouses during marriage by an onerous title and which has not been declared by the family arbitration to be personal property shall be common.
(3)    Property donated or bequeathed conjointly to the two spouses shall be common, unless otherwise stipulated in the act donation or will.

Art. 653.- Presumption.

(1)    All property shall be deemed to be common unless one of the spouses proves that he is the sole owner thereof.
(2)    The fact that certain property is personal may not be set up by the spouses against a  third person unless the latter knew or should have known such fact.

Art. 654.- Salaries and income . – 1. Normal management.

(1)    Each spouse shall receive his earnings and salaries.
(2)    Each spouse may have a bank account wherein to deposit his earnings and salaries and the income from his personal property.
(3)    He shall, at the request of the other spouse, render an account to the latter of the salaries and income received by him.

Art. 655.- 2. Rights of spouse.

(1)    A spouse may freely give to the other spouse a mandate to receive the salaries and income which are due to him.
(2)    The family arbitrators may at the request of one spouse, authorize  such spouse to receive the salaries and income of the other spouse and to give receipt therefore.
(3)    They may also authorize a spouse to attach the salary or income of the other spouse in whole or in part in the hands of the person by whom it is due.

Art. 656.- Administration of common property.

(1)    Common property other than the earnings, salaries and income of the wife, shall be administrated by the husband.
(2)    Nothing in this Article shall affect the provisions of Art. 638.
(3)    The family arbitrators may, at the request of the wife, entrusts to her, in the interest pf the family, the administration of the common property or certain common property.

Art. 657.- Duty to give notice.

The spouse who performs an act the management in respect of common property shall without delay inform the other spouse thereof.

Art. 658.-  Restriction of powers.

The agreement of both spouses shall be required for:
(a)    alienating a common immovable;
(b)    alienating a common movable the value of which exceeds five hundred Ethiopian dollars, or securities registered in the name of  both spouses;
(c)    contracting a loan exceeding one thousand Ethiopian dollars;
(d)    making a donation exceeding one hundred Ethiopian dollars or standing surety for a debt of a third party in an amount exceeding one hundred Ethiopia dollars.

Art. 659.- Debts of spouses.

(1)    Debts due by one spouse may be recovered on the personal property of such spouse and on common property.
(2)    Debts incurred n the interest of the household shall be deemed to be joint and several debts of both spouses and may be recovered on the personal property of each spouse and on common property.

Art. 660.- Debts in the interest of household.

The following debts shall be deemed to be debts incurred in the interest of the household:
(a)    debts contracted in order to ensure the livelihood of the spouses or their children:
(b)    debts contracted in order to fulfill an obligation of maintenances to which the spouses or one the them is bound;
(c)    other debts which are acknowledged to be such by the family arbitrators at the request of a spouse or creditor.

Art. 661.- Contribution to household expenses.

The spouses shall contribute to the household expense in proportion to their respective means.

Chapter 6. Dissolution of marriage

Art. 662.- Various forms of marriage equivalent.

(1)    The causes and effects of dissolution of marriage shall be the same whichever the form of celebration of the marriage.
(2)    In this respect, no distinction shall be made as to whether the marriage was celebrated before an officer of civil status or according to the formalities prescribed by religion or custom.

Section 1. Causes of dissolution of marriage

Art. 663.- Various causes.

(1)    Marriage shall terminate by the death of the spouses,
(2)    It shall terminate where the court orders its dissolution as a sanction of one of the conditions of the marriage.
(3)    It may be terminated by divorce.

Art. 664.-     Repudiation.

Any unilateral repudiation of the wife by the husband or the husband by the wife shall be of no effect.

Art 665.- Divorce by mutual consent.

(1)    Divorce by mutual consent is not permitted by law,
(2)    Divorce may not be ordered between two spouses except in accordance with the provisions of this Code.

Art. 666.- Petition for divorce.

(1)    A petition for divorce may be made of the family arbitrators either by the two spouses conjointly or by one of them.
(2)    It may be made by no other person.
(3)    The death of one of the spouses which occurs before  the divorce has been ordered shall put an end to divorce proceedings.

Art. 667.- Serious causes and other causes.

The conditions on which a divorce may be ordered and the effects of the divorce differ according to whether the petitioner establishes for not the existence in his favour of a serious cause of divorce.

Art. 668-.- Pronouncement of divorce for serious cause.

The family arbitrators shall make an order for divorce within three months from the petition having been made where the petitioner establishes in his favour the existence of a serious cause of divorce.

Art. 669.- Serious causes of divorce. – 1. Due to a spouse.

There is a serious cause for divorce:
(a)    when one of the spouses has committed adultery: or
(b)    when one of the spouses has deserted the conjugal residence when, since at least two years, the other spouse does not know where he is.

Art. 670.- 2. Note due to a spouses.

There is also a serious cause for divorce:
(a)    when one of the spouses is confined in a lunatic asylum since not less than two years;
(b)    when he absence of one of the spouses has been judicially declared.

Art. 671.- 3. Annulment of religious  marriage.

There is also a serious cause of divorce when a marriage contracted according to the formalities of a religion has been declared null by the religious authority.

Art. 672.- Disappearance of the character of serious cause.

(1)    The fault imputable to one of the spouses shall cases to constitute a serious cause where the other spouses has granted forgiveness.
(2)    Notwithstanding any proof to the contrary, such pardon shall be presumed where no petition for divorce has been made within six    months from the culpable conduct of the spouse having ceased.
(3)    The annulment of a religious marriage shall cease to constitute a serious cause of divorce if the spouses, after having known of the decision pronouncing such  annulment, continue living together.

Art. 673.- Other grounds.

(1)    Any other ground of divorce invoked by one of the parties shall not constitute a serious cause of divorcé.
(2)    A divorce may validly be ordered on one of such grounds if it be ordered on the conditions and at the times mentioned in the following articles.

Art. 674.- Provisional measures.

(1)    From the time the matter is brought before them, the arbitrators shall order such provisional measures as are required by the circumstance in particular as regards the maintenance of the spouses and of the children or the management  of the property of the spouses.
(2)    They may assign or prohibit a determinate residence tot the husband or to the wife.

Art. 675.- Revision may be made.

Any provisional measure taken by the arbitrators may be revised or annulled by them on the request of any interested person.

Art. 676.- Attempt o reconcile.

(1)    Where there is no serious cause of divorce, the family arbitrators  shall attempt to reconcile the parties and to make them renounce the petition for divorce.
(2)    To this end, they may prescribed the spouse any measure they think fit.

Art. 677.- Agreement on conditions of divorce.

(1)    Where the arbitrators fail to reconcile the spouses, they shall attempt to make them agree on the conditions of divorce.
(2)    Where such agreement is reached, the judgment of divorce shall be made in accordance therewith.

Art. 678.- Time for the delivery of judgment. 1. Principle.

(1)    Failing agreement between the parties, the family arbitrators shall pronounce the divorce within one year form the petition for divorce having been made to them.
(2)    Such period may be extended to five years by an agreement between the parties concluded either before or after the celebration of the marriage.

Art. 679.- Contents of judgment.

(1)    The judgment of the arbitrators  which pronounces the divorce shall regulate the consequences thereof.
(2)    It shall in particular give directions regarding the custody and maintenance of minor children born of the marriage and make such provisions as may be necessary for the liquidation of the relations between the spouses.

Art. 680.- Supplementary judgment.

(1)    In a first  judgment the arbitrators may confine themselves to pronouncing the divorce and may reserve for a supplementary judgment the regulations of the questions or of certain questions which arise out of the divorce.
(2)    The supplementary judgment shall be delivered within six months from the judgment of divorce having been given.

Art. 681.- Custody of children 1. Principle.

(1)    The custody and maintenance of children born of  the marriage shall be regulated having regard solely to the interest of such children.
(2)    Unless there be a serious reason for deciding otherwise, the children shall be entrusted to their mother up to the age of five years.

Art. 682.- 2. Revision may be made.

The  provisions made regarding the custody and maintenance of the children may at any time be revised by the arbitrators on the application of the father, mother or other ascendant of the children.

Section 2. Liquidation of pecuniary relations between spouses
Paragraph 1. Case of death of one of the  spouses.

Art. 683.- Autonomy  of agreements.

(1)    On the death of one of the spouses, the pecuniary relations between the spouses shall be liquidated in accordance with the contract of marriage and with the agreements entered into by the spouses.
(2)    In default of agreements or if these have not been validly stipulated, the pecuniary relations between spouses shall be liquidated in accordance with the provisions of the Section.

Art. 684.- Retaking personal property.

Each spouse shall retake in kind the property which is owned personally by him where he shows that he is the owner thereof.

Art. 685.- Withdrawal beforehand form common property.

(1)    If one of the spouses proves that any of his personal has been alienated and that the price thereof has fallen in the common property, he shall withdraw beforehand there form money or things of a value corresponding to such price.
(2)    The wife shall make her withdrawal before the husband.

Art. 686.-    Indemnities. – 1. Principle.

Notwithstanding any agreement or final acquaintance to the contrary, damages may be awarded to one  of the spouses by reason of acts which have been performed by the other spouse and which have affected the common property or the property owned personally by either spouse where:
(a)    the spouse who has performed such acts did not have the right to perform them; or
(b)    such acts constitute acts of bad administration or have been performed in fraud of the rights of the person making the claim.

Art. 687.- 2. Inadmissibility of action.

No claim for indemnity based on Art. 686 may be made by reason of acts which have been performed more than three years before the dissolution of the marriage.

Art. 688.- Unlawful enrichment.

Unless  otherwise agreed, an indemnity shall be awarded to a spouse who proves that the personal property of his spouses has been enriched to the prejudice of his own personal property of common property.

Art. 689.- Partition of common property.

(1)    Without prejudice to the provisions of the preceding Articles and unless otherwise provided in the contract of marriage or in a contract validly concluded between the spouses, common property shall be divided equally between the spouses, common property shall be divided equally between the spouses.
(2)    Those provisions in the Title of this Code relating to Succession which concern the manner of making a partition, the relations between co-heirs after partition and the rights of creditors after partition shall apply mutates mutandis to the partition of common property (Art. 1079-1113).

Paragraph 2. Case of divorce

Art. 690.- General rule.

(1)    Without prejudice to the provisions of the following Articles, pecuniary relations between spouses shall be liquidated in case of divorce as in the cease of death of one of the spouses.
(2)    The  provisions of the following Articles may not be set aside by the contract of marriage nor by another agreement made by the spouses before the dissolution of the marriage.

Art. 691.- Presents and matrimonial benefits.

(1)    On the request of the persons who have given presents or of their heirs, the family arbitrators may order the restitution of such presents as may have been received b the spouses on the occasion of the marriage or by reason of the existence of the marriage, whether by one spouse from the other or from the ascendants of one of the spouses or from other persons.
(2)    They may invalidate such other benefits as may have been made or promised to the spouses or to one of them, by one of the spouses or by a third person on the occasion or in consideration of the marriage.

Art. 692.- Unequal treatment of spouses.

(1)    The family arbitrators may award to one of the spouses a greater portion or even the whole of the common property.
(2)    They may also award to one of the spouses property belonging to the other spouse, provided the value of  such property does not represent more than one third of the estate of such other spouses.

Art. 693.- Responsibility for divorce. -1. Serious cause.

(1)    Where the divorce is ordered for a serious cause imputable to one of  the spouses, the penalties specified in Art. 691 and 692 shall apply to the prejudice of  such spouse.
(2)    They may not be applied to the prejudice of the other spouse.
(3)    They may not be applied either to one or to the other of the spouses when the divorce is ordered for a cause not imputable to one of the spouses.

Art. 694.- 2. Absence of serious cause.

(1)    Where the divorce is not ordered for a serious cause, the penalties mentioned in the preceding Articles shall apply to the spouse who has made the petition for divorce.
(2)    They may not be applied  to the other spouses.

Art. 695. – Direction to be followed.

(1)    The family arbitrators shall be a rule be bound to apply the penalties mentioned in the preceding Articles.
(2)    Notwithstanding the provisions of sub-art , (1) they have a discretionary power whether to apply them or not as well as for establishing in which measure to apply them.
(3)    In making their decision, they shall have regard to all the circumstances of the case and in particular to the importance and the gravity of the faults by reason of which the divorce has been ordered and the and the more or less morally reprehensible nature of the petition for divorce.

Paragraph 3.  Other cases of dissolution of marriage.

Art. 696.- Rule to be followed.

(1)    Where the court orders the dissolution of  a marriage as a sanction of the conditions of marriage, it shall regulate according to equity the consequences of such dissolution.
(2)    It shall be guided by the rules regarding the liquidations of the relations between spouses in cases of divorce. (ART. 690-695).
(3)    It shall in particular have regard to the good or bad faith of the spouses, the fact that the marriage has been consummated or not, the interest of children, if any, born of the dissolved union and the interest of third parties in good faith.

Chapter 7. Proof marriage

Art. 697.- Legal proofs.

Marriage may be proved only by the modes of proof provided for in this Chapter.

Art. 698.- Record of marriage.

Marriage is proved by producing the record or marriage draws up at the time of or after its celebration in accordance with law.

Art. 699.- Passion of status. – 1. Definition.

(1)    In default of the record of civil status, marriage is proved by the possession of the status of spouse.
(2)    Two persons have the possession of the status of spouses when they mutually consider and treat themselves as spouses and when they are considered and treated as such by their family and by society.

Art. 700.- 2. Proof and contestation.

(1)    The possession of the status of spouse may be proved by producing four witness, relatives or not of the interested parties.
(2)    It may be also contested b producing four witnesses, relatives or not of the interested parties.

Art. 701.- Act of notoriety.

In default of possession of status or if the possession of status is contested, the existence of the marriage is proved by an act of notoriety approved by the court.

Art. 702.- Authorization necessary.

(1)    The existence of a marriage may not be proved by means of an act of notoriety unless the court authorizes such mode of proof.
(2)    An application to this effect may be made at any time by any interested person.
(3)    Save in case of force majeure the spouses or their heirs shall be heard.

Art. 703.- When authorization may be given.

The court may authorize the marriage to be proved by an act of  notoriety where:
(a)    the circumstances mentioned in Art, 146 of this Code have occurred; or
(b)    a record of marriage drawn up by a religious authority is produced by the plaintiff; or
(c)    a contract  of marriage is produced by the plaintiff; or
(d)    the defendant spouses acknowledges the existence of the marriage, or there are presumptions or circumstantial evidence resulting from constant and sufficiently serious facts to enable the court to grant the authorization.

Art. 704.- Duties of officer of civil status.

(1)    The person requested to draw up an act of notoriety in connection with a marriage shall ensure that such request the given publicity, in conformity with the regulations and with the instructions given  to him by the court.
(2)    He shall invite third parties to record their opposition, if any, within one month form such publicity.

Art. 705.- Forms and approval.

(1)    The act of notoriety aiming at proving the existence of a marriage shall indicate, in so far as possible, the date since when the marriage exists and the date, if any, on which it has ceased to exist.
(2)    It shall be of no effect unless certified by four witnesses and approved by the court.

Art. 706.- Probatory value.

(1)    The record of marriage or the act of notoriety approved by the court shall be effective as regards all persons.
(2)    The person who alleges the falseness of either of them shall prove against it either that the marriage has not been celebrated or that it has been celebrated on a date different to that resulting from such record or act.

 Art. 707.- Nullity or dissolution of marriage.

The person who alleges that a marriage is null or has been dissolved shall prove such allegation.

Chapter 8. Irregular unions

Art. 709.- Explanation.

(1)    It is necessary and sufficient in order to have an irregular union that the behavior of the man and of the woman be analogous to that of married people.
(2)    They need not represent themselves to third parties as being married.
(3)    The mere fact that a man and a woman keep up sexual relations between hem, even if repeatedly and notoriously, is not sufficient, by itself, to constitute an irregular union between such man and woman.

Art. 710.- No bound of affinity created.

(1)    An irregular union shall not crate any bond of affinity between the man the relatives of the woman or between the woman and the relatives of the man./
(2)    The provisions concerning impediments to marriage in the case of affinity shall however apply in the case of an irregular union.

Art. 711.- No obligation for maintenance.

An irregular union shall not create any obligation to apply maintenances between the man and the woman engaged in such union.

Art. 712.- No community.

An irregular union shall not create any community of property between the man and the woman engaged in such union.

Art. 713.- No rights of succession.

An irregular union shall not create any right of succession between the man and the woman engaged in such union.

 Art. 714.- Surety for debts of woman.

A man engaged in an irregular union shall stand joint and several surety of the woman, by virtue of the law, in all contracts which are concluded by the woman and which are necessary for the maintenances of the man or of the woman or of the children born of the irregular union.

Art. 715.- Filiation of children.

The filiation of the children born of an irregular union shall be established in accordance with the Chapter of this Title relating to “Filliation”.

Art. 716.- Termination of union – 1. By the woman.

(1)    A  woman engaged in an irregular union may at any time put an end to such union.
(2)    By so doing she shall not be liable for any indemnity or restitution.

Art. 717.- 2. By the man.

(1)    A man engaged in an irregular union may at any time put an end to such union.
(2)    In such a case, if equity so requires, he may be condemned by the court to pay an indemnity to the woman corresponding to the expense of the maintenance of the woman for not more than six months.

Art. 718. Proof of union.- 1. Principle.

(1)    An irregular union is proved by the possessions of status.
(2)    A man and a woman have the possession of the status of people living in an irregular union when, although they are not married, they behave as such, and when their families and their neighbors consider that the live as married people.

Art. 719.- 2. Proof and contestation of possession of status.

(1)    Possession of status shall be proved by producing reliable witnesses.
(2)    It may be contested by producing reliable witnesses.

Art. 720.- Act of notoriety.

(1)    If the possession of status is contested, the existence of an irregular union shall be proved by an act of notoriety approved by the court.
(2)    The provisions of Art. 702-706 of this Code shall apply to the proof of an irregular union.

Art. 721.- Other relations out of wedlock.

(1)    Relations established between a man and woman out of wedlock or out of an irregular union shall have no judicial effect attached to them.
(2)    Neither the interested persons nor third parties may avail themselves in legal proceedings of such relations for any purpose whatever.
(3)    Without  prejudice to the provisions of this Code relating to acknowledgment or adoption, children born of such relations shall have a juridical bond only with their mother.

Chapter 9. Conflicts in cases relating to marriages,
Divorces and irregular unions

Art. 722.- Existence of valid betrothal.

Only the court is competent to decided whether a betrothal has been celebrated or not and whether such betrothal is valid.

Art. 723.- Disputes arising out of betrothal.

(1)    Disputes arising out of a betrothal or out of a breach of a betrothal shall be submitted to the arbitration of the persons who have been the witnesses to the contract of betrothal.
(2)    If some persons have been designated as first witnesses, the disputes shall be submitted to their arbitration.
(3)    The parties may agree, at the time of the betrothal or subsequently, to have recourse to the arbitration of other persons.

Art. 724.- Existence of valid marriage.

Only the court is competent to decide whether a marriage has been contracted and whether such marriage is valid.

Art 725.- Difficulties arising out of marriage.

(1)    Difficulties which arise between the spouses during the marriage shall be submitted to the arbitration  of the persons who have been witnesses to such marriage.
(2)    If some persons have been designated as first witnesses, the disputes shall be submitted to their arbitration.
(3)    The parties may agree, at the time of the marriage or subsequently, to have resources to the arbitration of other persons.

Art. 726.- Dissolution of marriage by death.

Dispute arising out of the dissolution of a marriage shall be submitted to  the arbitration of the same persons, when the dissolution of the marriage is caused by the death of one the spouses.

Art. 727.- Petition for divorce.

A petition for divorce made by both spouses or one of them shall be submitted to the arbitration of the same persons.

Art. 728.- Disputes arising out of divorces.

(1)    Disputes arising out of divorce shall be submitted to the arbitration of the arbitrators who have pronounced the divorce.
(2)    The interested parties may agree, at the time of the divorce or subsequently, to have recourse to the arbitration of other persons.

Art. 729.- Existence of divorce.

Only the court is competent to decide whether a divorce ahs been pronounced or not.

Art. 730.- Irregular union.

(1)    Only the court is competent to decide whether an irregular union has been established between two persons.
(2)    Only the court is competent to decide on disputes arising out of such union.

Art. 731.- Appointment of arbitrators.

If, on applying the rules laid down in the preceding Articles, it is found that no arbitrators has been designated for resolving a dispute which is to be submitted to arbitration, each of the spouses shall appoint two arbitrators

Art. 732. Designation of supplementary arbitrators.

Notwithstanding any agreement to the contrary, the  family arbitrators may by a majority between them agree to complete their jurisdiction by calling one or more supplementary arbitrators.

Art. 733.- Replacement of arbitrators- 1. Principle.

(1)    Where a person called to give a decisions as arbitrator dies or is not in a position to decide without delay the dispute which has arisen, he shall be replaced in the same manner as he has been appointed.
(2)    Where he refuses to perform the functions of arbitrator or is dismissed by the court, a new arbitrator shall be appointed by the court.

Art. 734.- 2. Disagreement on appointment of arbitrators.

Where the parties required to appoint an arbitrators by agreement between themselves do not agree on such appointment, the arbitrator shall be appointed by the court at the request of either party.

Art. 735.- Failure to appoint arbitrator.

Where the party required to appoint an arbitrator fails to do so within fifteen days after having been required to do so or appoints an arbitrator who does not accept his functions or who can not for whatever reason carry out his duties without delay, an arbitrator shall be appointed by the court on behalf of such party on the application of the other party.

Art. 736.- Appeal to court against decision of arbitrators.

The decisions made by the arbitrators, in the cases mentioned in the preceding Articles, may only be impugned before the court by alleging the corruption of the arbitrators or fraud in regard to third persons or the illegal or manifestly unreasonable character of such decisions.

Art. 737.- Failure by arbitrators to give decision.

The court may take cognizance of the matter on the application of one of the parties, if the arbitrators fail to make their decision within the period prescribed to them by the law or, in default of such period, within a reasonable period.

Chapter 10. Filiation
Section1. Ascertainment of the father and of the mother

Paragraph 1. General provisions

Art. 738.- Legal rules mandatory.

The legal rules concerning the ascertainment of the father and of the mother may not be derogated by agreement, except in the cases where the law expressly authorizes such agreements.

Art. 739. Maternal filiation.

Art. 740. Paternal filiation.

(1)    Paternal filiaiton results from the maternal filiaiton when a relation, provided for by the law, has existed between the mother and a certain man at the time of the conception or of the birth of the child.
(2)    It may result from an acknowledgement of paternity made by the father of the child.
(3)    It may result form a judicial declaration, in the case of abduction or rape of the mother.

Paragraph 2. Presumption of paternity.

Art. 741.- Presumption of paternity of the husband.

    A child conceived or born in wedlock has the husband as father.

Art. 742.- Generality of presumption.

(1)    The provisions of Art. 741 shall apply whatever the manner in which the maternal filiation of the child may have been established.
(2)    They shall also apply when the record of birth of the child does not indicate the husband as being the father of the child or when it indicates that another man is the father of the child.
(3)    In  such cases, the record of birth shall merely be corrected.

Art. 743.- Duration of pregnancy.

(1)    A child shall be deemed to have been conceived in wedlock if he is born more than 180 days after the celebration of the marriage and less than 300 days after its dissolution.
(2)    No proof to the contrary shall be admitted.

Art. 744.- Absence of husband.

When the birth occurs after a judgment has declared the absence of the husband, a child shall not have the husband as father.

Art. 745.- Irregular union.

(1)  A    child conceived or born during an irregular union has as father the man engaged in such union.
(2)  The provisions of Articles 742 and 743 concerning the generality of the presumption and the duration of pregnancy shall apply to such presumption.

Paragraph 3. Acknowledgment of paternity

Art. 746.- Principle

When the father of the child is not determined by applying the preceding Articles, the paternal filiation of the child may be established by an acknowledgment of paternity.

Art. 747.- Contents of acknowledgment.

(1)    An acknowledgment of paternity shall result from the declaration made by a man that he considers himself the father of a certain child, born or merely conceived.
(2)    Such declaration need not have been made with a view to producing the effects of an acknowledgment of paternity.

Art. 748.- Form and proof of acknowledgment.

(1)    An acknowledgment of paternity shall be no effect unless it is made in writing.
(2)    Except in the case mentioned in     Art. 146 of this Code, the acknowledgment may not be proved by witnesses.

Art. 749.-  Representation

(1)    The declaration shall be made personally by the father of the child, even thorough he is a minor.
(2)    The mandate to make it may only be given by a special power of attorney approved by the court.
(3)    It may be made personally by a person subject to judicial interdiction or in his name by a legal representative, with the permission of the court.

Art. 750.- Death of father.

(1)    If the father of the child is dead or not in a position of manifesting his will, the acknowledgment of paternity may be made in his name by the paternal grandfather or grandmother.
(2)    In default of paternal grandparents it may be made by another paternal ascendant.

Art. 751.- Admission of the mother.

(1)    The acknowledgment of paternity shall be of no effect unless it has been acknowledged to be well-founded by the mother of the child.
(2)    If the mother of the child is dead or not in a position of manifesting her will, the acknowledgment of paternity may be accepted by the maternal grandfather or grandmother of the child.
(3)    In default of maternal grandparents, it may be accepted by another maternal ascendant or by the guardian of the interdicted person.

Art. 752.- Majority of the child.

The acknowledgment of paternity shall be of no effect unless it has been accepted by the child himself when it is made after the later has attained majority.

Art. 753.- Form of acceptance.

The acknowledgment of paternity shall be deemed to be accepted where the person required to accept it has not raised any protest against such acknowledgment within one month after he has come to know of it.

Art. 754.- Death of child.

The acknowledgment of paternity may not be made after the death of the child unless the latter has left descendants.

Art. 755.- Revocation.

(1)    The acknowledgment of paternity may not be revoked.
(2)    A minor who has acknowledged a child may revoke such acknowledgement for so long as he is incapable and within the year following the cessation of his incapacity, unless his guardian consented to the acknowledgment.
(3)    This  right of revocation may be exercised by the minor only. It may not exercised by his legal representative nor by his heirs.

Art. 756.- Annulment.

(1)    It may be annulled on the ground of violence, in accordance with the provisions of the Title of this Code relating to “Contracts in general” (Art. 1706-1709 and 1808-1818).
(2)    It may not be annulled on the ground of error or fraud, in accordance with the provisions of the same Title, unless it is decisively proved that the child could not have been conceived of the person making the acknowledgment (Art. 1697-1705 and 1808-1818)

Art. 757.- Several acknowledgments prohibited.

Where an acknowledgement of paternity has been made in regard to a child and such acknowledgment has been duly accepted, no other acknowledgment of the child by another man shall be permitted unless the firs acknowledgment has been annulled.

Paragraph 4. Judicial declaration of paternity

Art. 758.- Abduction of rape.

When, after applying the preceding Articles, the child has no father, or when he has been disowned, a judicial declaration of paternity may be obtained where the mother of the child has been the victim of an abduction or of a rape at the time when the conception of the child is considered to have taken place.

Art. 759.- Brining of action.

(1)    The action for a judicial declaration of paternity may be instituted only by the mother of the child or, if she is dead or not in a position to manifest her will, by the guardian of the child.
(2)    It may not be instituted two years after the birth of the child or after the sentence of a criminal court in regard to the abduction or rape.

Art. 760.- Issue of the action.

The judicial declaration of paternity shall be made after the facts constituting the abduction or rape are established, unless it is decisively proved that the child has not been conceived of the man who has abducted or raped the mother.

Art. 761. No other cases.

A judicial declaration of paternity may not be demanded or made in any other case.

Section 2. Conflicts of paternity

Art.  762.- Regualtions of paternity, -1. Principle.

When, on  applying the preceding Articles, a child must be attributed to several fathers, a regulation of paternity may be made between the persons to whom the paternity of the child is thus attributed by the law.

Art. 763.- 2. Form.

(1)    The contract by which the regulation of paternity  is made shall be attested by four witnesses and approved by the court.
(2)    Except in the case of force majoure, the mother of the child shall be heard in peon.

Art. 764.- Legal presumptions.

Failing regulation of paternity, the two following presumptions shall be applied successively, where necessary:
(a)    the child shall be attributed to the husband of the mother in preference to the man who has an irregular union with the mother;
(b)    the child shall be attributed to the husband or the man with whom the mother is living at the time of the birth, in preference to the husband or the man with whom she was living at the time of the conception.

Art. 765.- Contractual assignment of paternity. – 1. Where  permissible.

Where the child is born than 210 days after the dissolution of the marriage or the cessation of the irregular union, the husband or the man who lived with the mother may by contract assign the paternity of the child to a third person who declares that he is the father of the child.

Art. 766.- 2 Form.

(1)    The contractual assignment of paternity shall be attested by four witnesses and approved by the court.
(2)    Except in the case of force majeure, the mother of the chills shall be heard in person.

Art. 767.- Representation.

(1)    The agreements mentioned in this Section shall be concluded by the interested parties themselves.
(2)    They may not be conclude in the name of such parties by their legal representative or their heirs.
(3)    A mandate to conclude them may only be given by a special power of attorney approved by the court.

Art. 768.- Revocation an annulment.

(1)    The agreements mentioned in this Section may not  be revoked.
(2)    They may be annulled on the ground of violence in accordance with the provisions of the Title of this Code relating to “Contracts in general “Art. 1706-1709 and 1808-1818).
(3)    They may not be annulled on the ground of error or fraud, in accordance with the provisions of the same Title, unless it is decisively proved that the child could not have been conceived of the person who has declared to be his father (Art. 1697-1705 and 1805-1818).

Section 3. Proof of filiation

Art. 769.- Record of birth.

Both the paternal and the maternal filiation of a person are proved by his record of birth.

Art. 770.-  Possession of status. – 1. Definition.

(1)    In default of a record of birth, filiation is proved by the possession of the status of child.
(2)    A person has the possession of the status of child when he is treated by a man or a woman , by their relatives and by society as being the child of such man or woman.

Art. 771.- 2. Proof and contestation.

(1)    Possession of status shall be proved by producing four witnesses.
(2)    It may be contested by producing four witnesses.

Art. 772.- Action of child to claim his status.

In default of possession of status  or where the possession of status is contested or does not correspond with the particulars in the record of birth, filiation is proved by an act of notoriety, approved by the court, upon a decision given on an action of the child to claim his status.

Art 773.- Admissibility of action.

(1)    The action of the child to claim his status may not be instituted except with the permission of the court.
(2)    Such permission shall not be granted unless there are presumptions or circumstantial evidence resulting form facts which are constant and sufficiently serious to enable the court to grant the permission.

Art. 774.- Admissibility of action.

No permission to institute the action to claim a status shall be granted where the person whose filiation is to be established has already another filitation resulting from his record of birth and corroborated by a possession of a status in conformity with such record.

Art. 775.-  Person instituting  the action.

(1)    The action to claim a status may be instituted by the child, by his guardian or his heirs.
(2)    It may be instituted by those who claim to be the father or mother of the child.
(3)    It may also be instituted, with  a view to disowning his paternity, by the person to whom the paternity of the child would be attributed, should the action be successful.

Art. 776.- Time.

(1)    The child may institute the action to claim a status  at any time during his life.
(2)    The guardian of the child and the persons mentioned in sub-arts. (2) and (3) of Art. 775 may institute it only during the minority of the child.
(3)    The heirs may not institute it unless the child died before the age of twenty years and within one year after his death.
Art. 777.- Person against whom action instituted.
(1)    The action to claim a status shall be instituted against the child where the  claim is made by the mother.
(2)    In other cases, it shall be instituted against the mother or her heirs,
(3)    The mother and the person to whom the paternity of the child will be attributed in case the action is successful must be made a party to the suit.

Section 4. Contestation of status and disowning
Paragraph 1. Contestation of status

Art. 778.- Principle.

The maternal filiation of the child may be contested at any time by any interested person.

Art. 779.- Admissibility of action.

(1)    The action to contest a status may not be instituted except with the permission of the court.
(2)    Such permission shall not be granted unless there are presumptions, or circumstantial evidence resulting from facts which are constant and sufficiently serious to enable the court to grant permission.

Art. 780. Inadmissibility of action.

The authorization to institute an action to contest a status shall be refused where the filiation where the fililation which the plaintiff seeks to contest result from the record of birth of the interested party and is corroborated by a possession of status corresponding with such record of birth.

Art. 781.- Defendant in the suit.

(1)    The action to contest a status shall be instituted against the person whose filiation is contested or against his heirs.
(2)    The mother and, where necessary, the father of the child shall be joined as parties in the proceedings.

Paragraph 2. Disowning

Art. 782.- Principle.

The paternal filiation of a child may be contested only by means of an action to disown.

Art. 783.- Where there are no relations with the mother.- 1. Principle.

The person to whom the law attributes the person to whom the law attributes the paternity of a child may disown such child by proving decisively that he could not have had sexual relations with the mother during the period included between the 300th and 180th day before the birth of the child.

Art. 784.- 2. Presumption.

(1)    The spouses shall be deemed to have had no sexual relations with one another during the time when they actually lived separated following a petition for divorce made by one of them or in consequence of a written agreement concluded between them.
(2)    Proof to the contrary by any means is admissible and in particular may result from mere presumptions.

Art. 785.-  When paternity is impossible. – 1. Principle.

The person to whom the law attributes the paternity of a child may disown such child by proving decisively that it is absolutely impossible in the particular case that he could be the father of the child.

Art. 786.- 2. Admissibility of action.

(1)    In the case mentioned in Art, 785, the action to disown may not be instituted except with the permission of the court.
(2)    Such permission shall not be granted unless there are presumptions or circumstantial evidence, resulting from facts which are constant and sufficiently serious to enable the court to grant the permission.

Art. 787.- 3. Presumptions and serious circumstantial evidence.

(1)    The presumptions and serious circumstantial evidence may consist of physical characteristics of the child recognized by science to be incompatible with those of the father.
(2)    They may also  result from the fact that the mother has concealed the birth or even merely her pregnancy to the husband or to the man with whom the lived, under circumstances which are apt to create doubts as regards his paternity.

Art. 788.- 4. Adultery or admission of the mother.

The adultery of the mother or her admission that the child has another father are not sufficient, by themselves, to constitute serious circumstantial evidence.

Art. 789.- Improbable paternity.

When the maternal filitation of the child is established by an action to claim a status, the person to whom the paternity of the child is attributed may disown the child by bringing forward any facts apt to prove that he is not the father of the child.

Art. 790.- Plaintiff in the suit.

(1)    Only the person to whom the paternity of the child is attributed by the application of the legal rules may institute on action to disown.
(2)    No application to this effect may be made by the mother or by a man who claims the paternity of the child or by the public prosecute or by the child himself.

Art. 791.-Judicially  interdicted persons.

(1)    An action to disown may, with the permission of the court, be instituted by the judicially interdicted person himself.
(2)    The action may, with the same permission, be instituted in the name of the interdicted person by his guardian.

Art. 792.- Time. – 1.- Principle.

(1)    An action to disown shall be instituted within the 180 days following the birth of the child.
(2)    Where the maternal filiation is established by an action to claim a status, the action to disown shall be instituted within 180 das from the judgment deciding on the action to claim a status having become final.

Art. 793.- 2. Exception.

(1)    Where the person to whom the paternity of the child is attributed by law dies or become incapacitated within the time fixed by law for instituting the action to disown, the right to disown the child may be exercised, in his stead; by one of his descendants.
(2)    In default of descendants, it may be exercised by his father and mother or in their default by another of his ascendants.
(3)    In default of ascendants, it may be exercised by one of his brothers or sisters to the exclusion of any other heir or representative.

Art.  794.- Inadmissibility of action.

Disowning shall not be allowed where it proved that the child has been conceived by means of artificial insemination with the written consent of the husband.

Art. 795.- Defendant in the suit.

(1)    The action to disown shall be instituted against the child or, where he is dead, against his heirs.
(2)    Where the child is a minor, he shall be represented by a tutor ad hoc appointed by the court.

Chapter 11. Adoption

Art. 796.- Adoptive filiation.

(1)    A bond of filiation may be created artificially by a contract of adoption between the adopter and the adopted child.
(2)    The bonds of consanguinity or affinity resulting from adoption as regards the relations between the adopter and the family of the adopted child and between the adopted child and the family of the adopter are set forth in Chapter 1 of this Title.

Art. 797.- Age of adopter.

(1)    Any person of age may adopt.
(2)    Where an adoption is made by two spouses, it is sufficient that one of them be of age.

Art. 798.- Adoption by married person.

(1)    Where the adopter is married, a contract of adoption ma not be made unless the two spouses conjointly adopt the adopted child.
(2)    Te provisions of sub-art. (1) shall not apply where a person adopts the child of his spouse.
(3)    Not shall it apply where one of the spouses is not in a position to manifest his will.

Art. 799.- Adoption of child merely conceived.

(1)    A  child merely conceived may be adopted.
(2)    The adoption may, in such caser, be revoked unilaterally at the will of the mother, before or within three months following the birth of the child.

Art. 800.- Children of adopter.

The existence of children of the adopter shall not constitute an obstacle to adoption.

Art. 801.- Adoption by several persons.

(1)    No person may be adopted by several persons unless these are tow spouses.
(2)    However, in the case of death of the adopter, a new adoption is possible.
(3)    Where a child has been adopted by two spouses and one of such spouses dies, the child may be adopted by the new spouses of the survivor.

Art. 802.- Parties to the contract.

(1)    The contract of adoption shall be made between the adopter and the adopted child, if the latter is more than fifteen years of age.
(2)    In other cases, it shall be made between the adopter and the guardian of the adopted child.

Art. 803. Consent of parents of adopted child.

(1)    Both the father and the mother of the child must give their consent to the adoption where they are alive and known.
(2)    Where one of them is dead, absent, unknown or incapable to manifest his will, he shall as far as is possible be represented by his nearest ascendants who shall give their consent to the adoption.
(3)    Where child the child has no ascendant susceptible of giving his consent, the consent of the family council shall be required.

Art. 804.- Approval of adoption.

(1)    The contract of adoption shall be of no effect unless it is approved by the court.
(2)    Before making its decision, the court shall hear the adopted child him self, if he is over ten years of age, and the person to whose custody the adopted child is entrusted, if  such person has not given beforehand his consent to the adoption.

Art. 805.-  Conditions for approval.

Adoption may not  take place unless there are good reasons for it and unless it offers advantages for the adopted child.

Art. 806.- Revocation of adoption.

    Adoption may not be revoked for any reason.

Chapter 12. Obligation to supply maintenance

Art. 807.- Subject matter of the obligation.

The person bound to supply maintenance shall supply to his creditors the means to feed, to lodge, to clothe and to care for his health in a decent manner, having regard to the social condition of the interested persons and local custom.

Art. 808.- Persons between whom the obligation exists.

(1)    An obligation to supply maintenance exists between relatives by consanguinity or affinity in the direct line.
(2)    An obligation to supply maintenance likewise exists between brothers and sisters born of the same parents or born of the same father or of the same mother.

Art. 809.- 1. Where there is no obligations.

The obligation to supply maintenance shall not subsist between relatives by affinity in the case where the bond which created the affinity has been dissolved by a divorce.

Art. 810.- 2. Judicial declaration of paternity.

In the case of abduction  or of rape, the obligation to supply maintenance shall not exist in favour of the person whose paternity has been declared judicially.

Art. 811.- 3. Condemnation of creditor.

Nor is maintenance due in  the case where the creditor for maintenance has been condemned for having made an attempt on the life of the debtor for maintenance or of an ascendant or of a descendant or of the spouse of the latter.

Art. 812.- Conditions for the existence of the obligation.

(1)    The obligation to supply maintenance shall not exist unless the person who claims its fulfillment is in need and not in a state of earning his livelihood by his work.
(2)    Nor shall such obligation exist where the person form whom maintenance  is claimed is not in a position to supply it.

Art. 813.- Mode of fulfillment of obligation.

(1)    The obligation to supply maintenance shall as a rule be fulfilled by means of a maintenance allowance paid by the debtor to the creditor for maintenance.
(2)    The amount of such allowance shall be fixed by taking into consideration the needs of the person claiming it and the means of the person liable thereto.

Art. 814.- Possibility of revision.

The decision which fixes the amount of the maintenance allowance may be reviewed at any time upon the demand of the debtor or of the creditor.

Art. 815.- Place where allowance paid.

Saving any decision of the court to the contrary, the arrears of a maintenance allowance shall be payable at the residence of the creditor.

Art. 816.- Arrears. -1. May not be assigned or attached.

(1)    The arrears of a maintenance allowance may neither be assigned nor attached, with out prejudice to the provisions of sub-art, (2) and (3.
(2)    They may, even before they fall due, be assigned in favour of in situations of assistance which provide for the needs of the beneficiary of the allowance.
(3)     The may be attached by the persons who have supplied to the beneficiary of the allowance what was necessary for his subsistence.

Art. 817.- 2. No accumulation.

All arrears which have not been received or claimed  within three months from their falling due shall cease to be due unless the creditor proves that such arrears were necessary for his subsistence.

Art. 818.- Creditor may be taken into debtor’s hose.

(1)    The debtor for maintenance may offer to discharge his obligation by taking the creditor for maintenance into his house.
(2)    The court shall decide whether, having regard to all the circumstances, such officer shall be accepted or not.
(3)    The debtor for maintenance may never to be compelled to take into his house the person entitled to claim maintenance

Art. 819.- Plurality of debtors.- 1. Principle.

Where several persons are liable to supply maintenance to a creditor for maintenance, the latter may claim maintenance from any of such persons.

Art. 820.- 2. Recourse.

(1)    The debtors who have been condemned to pay the allowance shall have recourse against those who have not been made parties to the suit.
(2)    The court may condemn the latter to repay the whole or part of the allowance, taking into account their means and their degree of relationship by consanguinity or by affinity with the person claiming maintenance.

Art. 821.- 3. Order of debtors.

The different debtors shall finally bear the liability arising out of the obligation to supply maintenance in the following order.
(a)    in the first place, the spouse;
(b)    in the second place, the descendants, according to their degree;
(c)    in the third place, the ascendants, according to their degree;
(d)    in the fourth place, the brother and sisters of the full blood;
(e)    in the fifth place, the brothers and sisters of the half bleed whether on the father’s or on the mother’s side;
(f)    in the sixth place, the descendants by affinity, according to their degree;
(g)    in the seventh place, the ascendants by affinity, according to their degree.

Art. 822.- 4. Agreement  between co-debtors.

(1)    The debtors for maintenance may validity agree, as regards their reciprocal relations, that maintenance shall be supplied to their common creditor by one of them.
(2)    If the creditor for maintenance has adhered to such agreement, he may not make a claim against the other debtors to obtain maintenance unless he has a serous reason for not respecting such agreement.

Art. 823.- Case of adoption.

(1)    The adopted child, his spouse and his descendants may not claim maintenance from the family of origin of the adopted child unless the adoptive family is not in a position to supply such maintenance.
(2)    They shall not be bond to supply maintenance to the ascendants of the family of origin unless the latter can not claim maintenance from another member of their family.

Art. 824.- Funeral expenses.

(1)    Whosoever is bound to supply maintenance to a person shall pay the funeral expenses of such person.
(2)    The person who has advanced such expenses may claim the repayment from the debtor for maintenance, in accordance with the provisions relating to voluntary management of the affairs of another person (Art. 2557-2265).

Art. 825.- Particular agreements.    

Any particular agreement providing for exceptions to the provisions of this Chapter shall be of no effect.