Italian Inheritance Law Checklist
Italian Inheritance: Wills
De Tullio Law Firm can give you full legal support in the field of inheritance law. Should you own assets in Italy and feel the need to draft a Will or need help with Italian succession documents, we can support you.
Italian succession law is based on the Roman Law principle which gives some protection to close members of the family, partially limiting the right of the testator to dispose of his/her own assets. Testamentary Succession is defined as the assignment of the hereditary assets in compliance with the wishes of the testator as set out in an Italian Will whereas in the absence of a Will inheritance is devolved following the principles of Legal Succession.
Where there is no will, succession law gives rights to a number of legitimate heirs who have rights to the assets of the deceased. Such heirs are the spouse of the deceased and the relatives identified by the law starting from the closer ones until the 6th degree of connection.
Italian succession law reserves a significant quota of the inheritance to very close relatives: spouse, ascendants and descendents are all defined as “forced heirs”, meaning that the testator cannot exclude them with their Will. When drafting an Italian will, the testator is free to dispose of a part of his assets known as “disposable quota”. This allows the testator to assign only part of their assets to strangers or non‐relatives.
Succession law is based on unity of inheritance which highlights the difference between property and non‐property assets: the law of the last domicile or citizenship of the deceased party is applicable to non‐property assets, while the law of the country where the property is located is applied to property assets. Therefore, properties in different countries will be regulated by the law of the country where each property is located. The succession procedure is deemed to be closed when all assets, rights and pending payments have been transferred to the rightful heirs either by mutual agreement or as consequence of judicial proceedings and when all Italian succession documents have been verified. Agreement of inheritance is then produced in written form and signed by the relevant parties.
Italian Inheritance: Probate
De Tullio Law Firm can assist you throughout the probate process, guiding you through the administration of the estate of a deceased person and the distribution of property according to the Will or to the Italian law.
In case you are nominated as heir, we can assist you during the publication of the Will.
We can handle the probate procedure and support with payment of debts or taxes related to the estate.
We can ensure that inheritance assets are assigned in compliance with the Will or with the Italian inheritance law.
We can, where necessary, assist in liaising with the competent fiscal authorities, collecting documentation, provide translations and provide assistance in appointing a Notary Public if necessary.
Italian Inheritance: Distribution of Assets
De Tullio Law Firm can assist in the legal distribution of assets relating to the Italian Inheritance procedure, from ensuring entitlement to the rightful heirs to distribution of inherited assets.
We can make sure that assets are distributed amongst rightful heirs.
We can assist in making an inventory of the deceased’s assets and help establish contact with the relevant competent authorities to complete the whole succession procedure.
Italian Inheritance: Litigation
De Tullio Law Firm can assist you where there may be disputes concerning an inheritance matter.
We can do so helping you reaching a settlement agreement when possible, or, if necessary, before the Italian Courts.
Italian Inheritance: Arbitration
Inheritance matters can be very complex and can generate harsh disputes due to the emotional aspects which are frequently involved.
De Tullio Law Firm has an experienced team of professionals who can help find the best possible solutions preventing costly and stressful litigations in Court.
Whenever possible, we prefer to privilege alternative disputes resolutions because we strongly believe that litigation should only be considered as a last resort solution.
Italian Inheritance: Estate Planning
De Tullio Law Firm can advise you with planning your inheritance matters during your lifetime suggesting solutions which are compliant with Italian succession legislation and tax efficient.
Italian Inheritance: Taxes
De Tullio Law Firm can assist you with all Italian Inheritance Tax procedures connected with a death, including payment of Inheritance tax.
Such procedures are compulsory according to Italian law and must be started within one year since the decease of the testator.
This implies lodging the statement of succession with the competent tax authorities also paying the connected inheritance tax.
Compliance with this procedure represents an essential condition that the heirs should meet in order to receive the inheritance assets.
We can advise you on Italian Inheritance tax payable should you inherit assets in Italy.
Italian Inheritance: Lasting Power of Attorney
Don’t wait for an emergency to happen before putting a Lasting Power of Attorney, Procura Generale in Italian, in place. You can only put one in place while you don’t need it. Having a Lasting Power of Attorney will make life easier for your family to manage your affairs if you become incapacitated.
You should be extremely careful about who you chose as your agent. You are delegating the management of your legal and financial affairs to someone else. Hence, it is extremely important that you entrust these matters to a reliable and competent person, preferably a professional. Appointing anyone who does not have enough experience or with whom you might have a conflict of interests is highly inadvisable.