How is the inheritance made if the family is dispersed around the European Union or if there are parts of the estate in other EU states?

In accordance with the EU Succession Regulation, when a person dies, all the legal successors are subject to the law of the state in which the deceased had their habitual place resistance at the time of death.
Pursuant to the EU Succession Regulation, the deceased is entitled to a limited choice of law. Accordingly, he/she can choose to bequeath their estate according to the law of the state to which they belonged at the time of their death.

Example: An Austrian citizen has his habitual place of residence in Italy. Accordingly, the Italian law of succession would apply. He can also specify, however, that due to being an Austrian citizen, the Austrian law of succession applies.

Cases of inheritance with a foreign connection can concern, for example:

  • a person who has lived abroad,
  • a person who has held a different citizenship,
  • or a person who has bequeathed foreign assets.

The meaning of the regulation: Complex cases in which several laws of succession of different countries might apply (so-called fragmentation of succession) should be excluded. 

It is absolutely recommended to rely on competent advice from a notary or a solicitor. In case of any questions please do not hesitate to consult an expert about this.

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