Person participating in an act to assert his/her right.


Property given by a debtor to his/her creditor as security. The debtor is divested from the property given as security. The creditor holding the right of pledge can sell the given property to pay himself/herself. He/she therefore enjoys a priority over the other creditors.


A type of guarantee between a debtor and a creditor consisting in handing over movable or immovable property. (also see pledge ).­


Form of guarantee between a debtor and a creditor consisting in a movable or immovable property being given. (see also Pledge )


Advantage granted to an heir to withdraw, before any sharing , an amount of money or some properties.


Legal priority right of purchase available to private individuals and certain authorities requiring prior notice.


Material or moral damage caused voluntarily or involuntarily to others.

Presales contract

Preliminary contract, reciprocal instrument by which the parties, vendor and buyer, agree on the conditions of a sale while waiting for the satisfaction of the suspensive conditions


Period at the expiry of which a legal or factual situation is validated.


Method of proof. Consequence drawn by a law or a judge from one or several known facts to deduct the existence of another fact that has not yet been proven.

  • Simple presumption : it is possible to produce proof of the contrary.
  • Irrebuttable presumption: it is not possible to produce proof of the contrary.

Private agreement

Act signed only by the contracting parties.

Probative value

Attribute of the authentic deed in virtue of which the signature of the deed by the notary is proof of its content and date.

Professional secrecy

Strict prohibition of revealing to third parties anything brought to the knowledge of the notary by virtue of his duties, unless specifically authorized by law. The professional secrecy applies to the notary and to any person working in his office.

Property acquired after the marriage

This term refers to the property that spouses purchase with their income while married. Under the matrimonial regime of “joint owners­hip reduced to property acquired after the marriage”, the property is jo­intly owned irrespective of whether the spouses purchase it together or alone.