Inheritance acceptance in Greece: Legal procedures
Before becoming the owner of any estate to which they are entitled, for inheritance acceptance in Greece, requires a series of legal and administrative procedures. An heir’s rights may be determined by the decedent’s Will or, in the absence of a Will, by intestacy law. An estate must go through a few legal procedures before it can be accepted because Greek law covers both movable assets that are located outside of Greece and all assets that are located in Greece.
Inheritance acceptance in Greece or renouncement of inheritance in Greece
One must first confirm that they wish to receive the bequest. One may want their portion of the estate to go to a different family member, or the estate may contain outstanding debts. The beneficiary may choose not to accept the inheritance. All of this needs to be completed in the allotted time.
There is a four-month probationary period for the Will if the decedent passed away in Greece and the heir resides there as well.
On the other hand, the probationary period is extended to twelve months in the event that the successor resides overseas or the dead passed away abroad. If the Will is not repudiated, the heir is deemed to have accepted the bequest, and something must be done within the allotted time. A death certificate will be required if the heir decides to accept the inheritance. The legislation demands to know if the dead was a Greek citizen in the event that they are not citizens of Greece or are not living in Greece.
If the dead was a Greek citizen residing abroad, their death has to be reported to the Greek Consulate close to the scene of the crime. The original foreign death certificate that has been notarized by a Greek consulate and certified with apostilles and authentications is acceptable under Greek law.
A next-of-kin certificate is an additional important document. If the deceased was a Greek citizen, it is issued in Greece. If not, two affidavits with the complete names of the deceased’s next of kin—spouses, siblings, children of deceased siblings, and siblings—are typically needed. Next, it must be determined whether or not a will has been left. In the event that a Will is discovered, is probated in another nation, or is known under Greek law to be in the possession of a notary in Greece, the terms of the handwritten Will shall be honored upon subsequent Greek probate.
Legal documentation and probate procedures
Before a will is submitted for probation in Greece, Greek attorneys must review it to determine whether it is applicable there. Additionally, whether it can yield the intended legal outcomes or whether its usage and probation in Greece create any legal ambiguities. In Greece, an estate’s assets are an important consideration. If they are immovable assets, they also need to be located, recognized, tallied, described, and reported to the land registration, notary, and tax authority. If not, the attorney will seek using the deceased’s name at the local land registration and get and study a certified copy of the act by which the deceased had possessed the asset.
It is crucial to have the complete name of the person who possessed the assets in Greece in addition to their mother’s and father’s first names. For the administration of the estate, it is useful to have a key to a home or apartment or to know the route to a piece of property. The immovable asset must be inspected by a civil engineer, who must also create technical records such survey maps and asset technical descriptions.
Lastly, let’s say the heir is not a Greek national and is unable to accept the inheritance in Greece within a few days or weeks. An heir must accompany their attorney to courts, notaries, tax offices, and other authorities during the several-month-long process. If they are unable to do so, they must grant a power of attorney (POA) so that their lawyer can act in their best interests. As a result, they are free to return home, leaving the lawyer to continue working in Greece.
It is not even necessary for the heir to visit Greece. A Power of Attorney (POA) may be signed at the Greek Consulate or by a local notary public with an apostille, and then forwarded to the Greek attorney.
Tax implications and inheritance acceptance in Greece laws
The heirs of any estate involving a deceased person who died before the end of 2008 are exempt from paying inheritance taxes to the Greek government.
But in Greece, there is either no inheritance tax or a very low one, even if the dead passed away in 2009 or later.
If the deceased’s children and spouse/partner have a portion worth up to 150,000 euros, they are exempt from inheritance tax. This implies that if a family leaves behind 290,000 euros for two children. They receive equal parts of the estate and are exempt from inheritance tax as long as they notify the tax office of the estate within four or twelve months following the death of the testator or the expiration of the will.
Each successor will only be required to pay inheritance tax of one percent (1%) for shares valued up to 300,000 euros, even if the shares are worth more than 150,000 euros (i.e., one percent or a maximum of 1,500 euros for the portion from 150,000 to 300,000 euros). The tax-free thresholds are lower for siblings or offspring of the deceased’s predeceased siblings.
They will still just have to pay a small inheritance tax or no tax at all. Since unpaid property taxes and other debts typically represent a small portion of the real market value of the assets to be inherited, it is usually worthwhile to claim the estate.
An overview of accepting an inheritance in Greece can be seen above. Every specific situation has unique facts. To make an informed decision on how to proceed, an heir must first speak with a lawyer in Greece to understand the law and the procedures in each particular area.
For more information about Inheritance Law in Greece and the Procedure for Inheritance acceptance in Greece you have to follow, contact the best Inheritance Lawyers in Greece, of Economou & Economou law office in Athens, contact
For more details about the process of inheritance law in Greece you can also follow the link https://www.econlaw.gr/portfolio-item/inheritance-lawyer-in-athens-greece/