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    Who owns the property in our marriage?
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    There are many rules governing property in a marriage. Subject to certain qualifications, each person owns the property in his or her name. Where something is bought which doesn't involve title documents, the item will be regarded as owned by the person who paid for it. If you got the property as a gift, even though you didn't pay for it, it is considered yours. If it was bought from a joint bank account or on the understanding that it was to be owned together, then it is jointly owned by you and your spouse.

    Sometimes property may be bought with one spouse's money and put into the name of the other spouse but the court will conclude that it is really owned jointly by the parties or by the person who paid for it. This happens when the non-titled spouse claims an interest because of a trust. The law dealing with trusts (there are constructive trusts, remedial constructive trusts and resulting trusts) has become quite complex as it relates to dealing with property acquired during the marriage. However this approach has been used by the courts to give property rights to non-married spouses which they would not otherwise have.

    The courts have also assisted non-married spouses by applying the principles of unjust enrichment to try to remedy a situation where one person will end up with a benefit to which they may be entitled in law but not in fairness. In these cases the courts can look to what is referred to as the principles of equity.

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