All Posts By

Bernhard Schmeilzl

German Succession & Inheritance LawWills and Succession Planning

The Number One Blunder made by English Wills & Probate Solicitors

What English Solicitors tend to overlook when preparing Wills for overseas Clients We see cases like this all the time: A British expat lives in Germany for a few years and unexpectedly passes away while having his or her permanent residence in Germany. A British family moves to Germany permanently but keeps their English wills in place. Or they ask their English solicitor to prepare a new will for them although they now live in…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
January 23, 2019
European ProbateGerman ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance LawInternational Probate

Which German Court has jurisdiction for a Probate Application?

Submitting the German Probate Application to the wrong court will cause months of delay If the deceased had owned assets in Germany, you will need to apply for a separate German grant. Grants issued by a British probate registry or a United States probate court are useless in Germany. As we have explained in our post “How to apply for a German Grant of Probate”, German institutions (land registry, banks, insurance companies etc) as well…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
January 22, 2019
Criminal LawGerman Tort LawLitigation in Germany

Witness to a Crime in Germany?

Your Rights and Duties as a Witness to a Crime in Germany In case you have observed a criminal offence in Germany or if -- for whatever reason -- you have knowledge about factual circumstances relevant in connection with a German criminal investigation, you may be approached by the German police or the German public prosecutor (Staatsanwalt) and asked to give a witness statement. Here's what you should know as a (potential) witness in a German…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
January 22, 2019
Criminal LawDebt collectionGerman Tort Law

How to press criminal Charges in Germany

Victim of a Crime in Germany? These are your options: In case you have been hurt in an accident in Germany which was caused by someone else  or if you have been outright assaulted and injured while in Germany, you should immediately think about how to best collect the necessary evidence for a potential legal case later on. In other words: document all the relevant facts, for example by getting the names, addresses and phone…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
January 21, 2019
German LawGerman ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance LawGoing to courtInternational Probate

German Grant of Probate not always necessary

Since the 2016 landmark ruling by the German Federal Court of Justice, beneficiaries (heirs) to a German estate may be able to entirely avoid German probate proceedings. Even if there is just a handwritten will. If a decedent who owned assets in Germany died intestate, a German grant (ERbschein) is unavoidable. But if he or she has made any kind of German will, chances are that formal probate proceedings may not even be necessary to…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
December 17, 2018
Business in GermanyGerman Labor LawGerman Law

Relocate from UK to Germany

Thousands of German and Austrian Expats leave Great Britain and move back to Europe How do we know this? Because the enquiries from German and Austrian companies asking us about how to quickly relocate their employees from the United Kingdom back to Germany have skyrocketed. The two main reasons for the exodus are: (1) German and Austrian expats in England feel unwanted and do no longer see a good future for themselves and their family…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
December 10, 2018
Conveyancing GermanyGerman LawGerman ProbateGerman Tax LawProperty in Germany

How to find a Plot of Land in Germany

Practical tips on researching German property (real estate) online Many of our clients want to sell German property. Either because they move abroad or because they have inherited German real estate and decide not to keep it. Some of our clients in Anglo-German inheritance cases do not even know where exactly the German plot of land is located. They just have heard rumours that "granny, uncle or aunt so and so" had owned property in…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
November 27, 2018
Austrian Inheritance LawAustrian ProbateEuropean Probate

Probate in Austria: What is “Todesfallaufnahme”?

The first practical step when applying for an Austrian Grant of Probate is completing the Todesfallaufnahme questionnaire In the previous posts How to Access Assets in Austria? and How to deal with Assets in Austria we have already explained the relevant Austrian succession laws and probate regulations. In this new post, we show what practical step needs to be taken in order to start the Austrian probate procedure. Contact the competent Austrian probate court Under…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
November 24, 2018
European ProbateGerman ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance LawInternational ProbateLitigation in GermanyWills and Succession Planning

How to speed up German Probate Applications

Avoid common mistakes in your application for a German grant of probate (Erbschein) The basics of the German non-contentious probate procedure are explained in the post How to apply for German Probate. There you can also find an example of what a genuine German grant, i.e. the “Erbschein” (certificate of inheritance) looks like. For those who want to dig deeper and get really technical about German probate, we now examine the central statutes of German…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
October 26, 2018
Civil action

Where to File a Lawsuit in Germany

This Chart explains Jurisdiction and Venue in German Civil and Commercial Court Cases. More information on litigation and legal fees in Germany is available on our expert law blog www.GERMANCIVILPROCEDURE.com The law firm Graf & Partners was established in 2003 and has many years of experience with British-German and US-German legal matters.The Anglo-German litigation lawyer team of GP Chambers is well equipped to advise and represent clients from the UK and other English speaking countries.…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
October 12, 2018