Examination of Legal Challenges on Protection of Matrimonial Homes Against Unlawful Dispositions in Tanzania
The Law of Marriage Act, 1971 and the Land Act of 1999 prohibit dispositions of matrimonial home by the owner without consent of the other residing spouse. Recent appellate courts' decisions in Tanzania show that dispositions of matrimonial homes contrary to law, particularly, in the form of gifts to children, sale, and mortgage are many. Based on literature and cases qualitatively analyzed, this article establishes the legal challenges behind continued unlawful dispositions of matrimonial homes. The data from literature and cases were around the following issues: a) The law does not punish violators who take part in unlawful dispositions, instead, third parties are left without a remedy (at risk), and b) personnel in local government administrative structure, while participate in disposition of matrimonial homes in practice, in law they do not feature anywhere. The article argues that public awareness on the current law is long overdue and there should be legislative reforms on areas that encourage violation of the law.