Temporary Measures

1. General information

2. Contents of temporary measures

3. Effects of temporary measures

4. Previous measures

5. Simultaneous measures


1. General information

During the divorce, separation or annulment procedures, temporary measures (medidas provisionales) may be adopted in order to maintain thestatus quo of the parties during the pendency of the action. Measures such as custody, visitation, support, attorney's fees and injunctions or restraining orders.

There are two types of measures that can be taken:

Previous measures (medidas provisionales or provisionalísimas): These should be brought before beginning the separation, divorce or annulment procedure. Proof of urgency or necessity will be required.


  • Simultaneous measures (medidas provisionales or simultáneas):These should be brought together with the petition for separation, divorce or annulment of the marriage.


    2. Contents of temporary measures

    The Judge authorities shall determine both types of measures. The following aspects must be governed:


    a) About children:

    Temporary measures shall state custody of children, visitation schedule for the non-custodial parent and child support.

    b) About family dwelling:

    Temporary measures shall establish the attribution of the use of the family dwelling, which normally will be granted to the parent who gets the custody of children.

    c) About family expenses:

    Temporary measures shall establish the manner in which the spouses shall continue to contribute to family expenses. It shall be determined the alimony that shall be made by one of the spouses in favour of the other spouse during the litigation.

    There is no legal tariff in Spain determining the alimony for each case; instead the Spanish judge authorities will determine such alimony based on the circumstances of each specific case.

    After the court procedure, the alimony will be substituted by a compensation allowance.

    The Spanish judge may grant the payment of the alimony or compensation allowance by establishing some precautionary measures, e.g. by freezing the salary.

    d) About the matrimonial property regime

    Not until the sentence for the procedure of separation, divorce, or nullity of marriage is brought in, can the matrimonial property regime be extinguished. Notwithstanding the judge may establish any suitable measure to protect the matrimonial property during the court procedure.


    3. The effects of the temporary measures

    The effects of the temporary measures are the following:

    • Once these are brought, the spouses may live separate. Any of the spouses may abandon the family dwelling without committing a crime for abandoning the spouse and children.
    • The power of representation the spouses have given to each other is annulled.


    4. Previous measures

    Previous measures (medidas provisionales or provisionalísimas) can befiled before the Spanish courts. The plaintiff shall state the details of the parties, the circumstances under which these measures are brought and the specific measures that need to be taken.

    Besides the suit, the plaintiff shall present the marriage certificate, birth certificates of the children and other documents necessary to prove that the said measures must be taken.

    You do not need the assistance of a Spanish Lawyer to bring previous measures, however legal assistance is required during the court procedure.

    The parties will be summoned to trial. if they do not reach an agreement about the measures brought, the judge will adopt those ones that he considers suitable, according with the circumstances of the case.

    The previous measures will have no effect if no suit for separation is filed within 30 days since the judge determined them.


    5. Simultaneous measures

    Simultaneous measures (medidas provisionales or simultáneas) can be brought along with the separation, divorce and nullity suit, when no previous measures had been taken before.

    If the parties do not reach an agreement when they are summoned to trial, the judge will determine what he considers fit according with the circumstances of the case. The court decision cannot be appealed.

    The final sentence will contain any definitive measures, thereby terminating any simultaneous measures.