Scope of the protection given to the family residence

In some cases, your spouse may apply to have an act relating to your family residence annulled, if you did not obtain your spouse's written consent. For example, this may be an act under which you:

  • sell the house or condominium that is your family residence;
  • lease a room in your family residence to a third person;
  • sublet the apartment that is your family residence to a third person;
  • terminate the lease on your family residence.

Your spouse's rights vary depending on the type of building in which you have your family residence, in other words whether it is:

  • a building with fewer than five dwellings that you own;
  • a building with five or more dwellings that you own;
  • a dwelling that you rent.

Building with fewer than five dwellings

Before selling, leasing or hypothecating the part of the building reserved for the use of your family, you must obtain your spouse’s written consent. If not, your spouse may apply to have the act annulled.

A building with fewer than five dwellings is, for example:

  • a single-family or multi-generational house;
  • a triplex;
  • a row house;
  • a condominium in a building with four or fewer condominium units.

Building with five or more dwellings

Before selling, leasing or hypothecating the part of the building reserved for the use of your family, you must obtain your spouse’s written consent.

If your spouse has not ratified a rental agreement, he or she may apply to have it annulled.

However, your spouse:

  • may not apply to have a sale or hypothec annulled;
  • may demand that the acquirer grant a lease of the premises already occupied by the family as a dwelling.

A building with five or more dwellings is, for example:

  • a condominium in a building with five or more condominium units;
  • an apartment complex owned by one of the spouses.

Rented dwelling

You must obtain your spouse’s written consent before:

  • subletting your family residence;
  • transferring your rights to the family residence;
  • terminating your lease.

If written consent has not been given, your spouse may request the anulment of the act.

A rented dwelling is, for example, a house or apartment that you rent.

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