Real estate—Monaco—Q&A guide
Real estate—Monaco—Q&A guide

The following Property practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Real estate—Monaco—Q&A guide
  • 1. How would you explain your jurisdiction’s legal system to an investor?
  • 2. Does your jurisdiction have a system for registration or recording of ownership, leasehold and security interests in real estate? Must interests be registered or recorded?
  • 3. What are the legal requirements for registration or recording conveyances, leases and real estate security interests?
  • 4. What are the requirements for non-resident entities and individuals to own or lease real estate in your jurisdiction? What other factors should a foreign investor take into account in considering an investment in your jurisdiction?
  • 5. If a non-resident invests in a property in your jurisdiction, are there exchange control issues?
  • 6. What types of liability does an owner or tenant of, or a lender on, real estate face? Is there a standard of strict liability and can there be liability to subsequent owners and tenants including foreclosing lenders? What about tort liability?
  • 7. How can owners protect themselves from liability and what types of insurance can they obtain?
  • 8. How is the governing law of a transaction involving properties in two jurisdictions chosen? What are the conflict of laws rules in your jurisdiction? Are contractual choice of law provisions enforceable?
  • 9. Which courts or other tribunals have subject-matter jurisdiction over real estate disputes? Which parties must be joined to a claim before it can proceed? What is required for out-of-jurisdiction service? Must a party be qualified to do business in your jurisdiction to enforce remedies in your jurisdiction?
  • More...

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to real estate in Monaco published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: September 2020).

Authors: CMS—Sophie Marquet; Alexia Delaunay

1. How would you explain your jurisdiction’s legal system to an investor?

Monaco has a civil law system. Courts rule in law, but equity must be observed during all court proceedings.

Parties can obtain ex parte decisions concerning real estate (eg, provisional mortgage) or even injunctions (eg, deed or lease communication), but proceedings are essentially governed by the adversarial principle.

Parol is admissible evidence by testimony (rare) or affidavit, but any obligation of more than €1,140 must be evidenced in writing (with some exceptions). Electronic documents are admitted under certain conditions. Recently, Monaco's legal system has recognised electronic signature and stamps.

Oral contracts involving real estate (eg, lease agreement) are often admitted by the courts, but their content can be difficult to evidence.

Except for real estate deeds signed before public notaries, lawyers can prepare and review any contract involving real estate (eg, undertakings or draft agreements, lease agreements, works contracts and commercial lease transfer).

2. Does your jurisdiction have a system for registration or recording of ownership, leasehold and security interests in real estate? Must interests be registered or recorded?

A public registry both registers and records, among other things, ownership deeds, mortgages, long-term leasehold (over

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