Simple adoption – a controversial way to create a legal relationship between cohabitants. An analysis of French law
Keywords:simple adoption, cohabitation, cohabitants, legal relationship, abuse of law
In spite of a legal deﬁnition of cohabitation, the French legislator did not regulate either personal or property relationships between cohabitants. Cohabitation remains a purely factual situation and in light of law, cohabitants are strangers to each other. There are no formal ties between the cohabitants that aﬀects their property relations. Despite the rejection of a formalized union such as marriage or PACS (Pacte Civil de So- lidarite´, Civil Pact of Solidarity), some cohabitants want to create a legal dimension to their relationship, very often for reasons of property and inheritance. This has led to controversial attempts to use simple adoption between cohabitants. Therefore, French courts had to settle whether such a solution is possible. Unanimo- usly and ﬁrmly, French authors and jurisprudence accept the view that simple adoption between cohabitants is unacceptable. This institution cannot be used to legitimize coha- bitation because it would be contrary to its primary purpose, which is to create a legal relationship imitating a parental bond. It is also impossible to use simple adoption by cohabitants to regulate their property relations. In both cases we would be dealing with the distortion of the institution of simple adoption.