A consensual union is a union in which an unmarried woman and unmarried man have been cohabitating for at least three years or for a shorter period if they had a child together or if this union is continued by entry into marriageThe consensual union has the same personal and financial implications as a marriage, and the legal provisions on the rights and obligations of marital spouses, rights and obligations of parents and children, maintenance obligations and obligations from property relations and other relations apply to it accordingly.
The name of the biological father of a child born in a consensual union is entered into the birth register by admitting or establishing paternity. Paternity can be admitted by giving a statement for the record before a registrar, the Croatian Social Welfare Institute or court or in a consular office or diplomatic mission of the Republic of Croatia abroad.
Upon termination of a consensual union, one parent can file a lawsuit or both parents can file a joint motion to begin the court proceedings for a child arrangement order. Before filing a motion to the court, you have to take part in the procedure of compulsory counselling at the Croatian Social Welfare Institute.
Moreover, in case of parents who have never cohabitated, one parent can file a lawsuit or both parents can file a joint motion to begin the court proceedings for a child arrangement order.
You can find out more about compulsory counselling, family mediation and parenting plans in the article Divorce.
For more on the obligation of maintenance of a child/non-marital partner, please read the article Maintenance.
Even if parents have never been in a consensual union, a parent of a child born outside of marriage is obliged to support the parent who is taking care of the child and does not have adequate resources to support themselves for one year from the child’s date of birth.
The father of a child born outside of marriage is obliged to support the child’s matter for the term of her pregnancy if she does not have adequate resources to support herself.