The court of Appeals presided over by Justices Elizabeth Musoke, Muzamiru Kideedi, and Christopher Gashirabake has today made pronouncements affecting the property rights of the married in Uganda in case of divorce.
According to the pronouncements in their judgment in Ambayi versus Aserua civil appeal No. 100 of 2015; the court of appeals stated as follows:
- Marriage does not give a spouse an automatic half-share in the matrimonial property
- A spouse’s share in the matrimonial property is dependent on his/her contribution to it
- Contribution can take either monetary or nonmonetary forms or both
- The non-monetary contribution usually consists of unpaid care and domestic work rendered by a spouse during the marriage. That is to say; caring for the children, elderly and sick members of the family, household chores, cultivating food for the family, subsistence, etc
- When the court is determining the value of the unpaid care and domestic work rendered during the marriage, it should take into account monetary value principles like the value or cost of similar or substitute services available on the labor or service market.
- Where one party has in the course of the marriage contributed towards upgrading the other spouse in terms of education her/him, such contributions should be deducted from the beneficiary spouse’s total claim for unpaid care and domestic work.