Category

Family Law

Family LawGerman Law

German Pre-Nuptials are fully binding Contracts

German Family Law permits Spouses to enter into a Marriage Contract (Ehevertrag) London is referred to as the divorce capital of the world because English law and English family courts are famous for awarding large amounts to the "poorer" spouse. The legal principles "equal split" and "clean break" have brought many celebrities and other wealthy individuals to tears when the marriage went sour and the not so famous and not so rich spouse filed for…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
June 30, 2020
Family Law

Experts on German Family Law

German Pre-Nuptials, Post-Nuptials, Divorce Proceedings, Separation Agreements and Divorce Mediation International families as well as British and American expats in Germany are somtimes faced with German family law issues. Either because they wish to get their personal and financial affairs in order and ringfence their property by way of a pre-nuptial agreement which must "work" (i.e. be enforceable) in Germany as well as in the UK and the USA. Or because the marriage is in…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
February 5, 2020
Family LawGerman LawGerman Succession & Inheritance LawGerman Tax Law

Adoption of an Adult in Germany

How to adopt an adult under German law. And why people do it. Adopting an adult person (Erwachsenenadoption) is increasingly popular in Germany, especially in wealthy cities like Munich, Frankfurt or Berlin. Why so? Because a child -- including an adopted adult -- is entitled to claim the maximum German personal gift & inheritance tax allowance of EUR 400,000. More distant relatives, for instance nieces and nephews, only have a meager EUR 20,000 tax allowance…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
February 7, 2019
Family LawGerman Labor LawGerman LawStarting Business

What is a “polizeiliches Führungszeugnis”?

And when do you need it? The German “polizeiliches Führungszeugnis” is the equivalent of the British “enhanced criminal record certificate” as defined in sec. 115 Police Act 1997, sometimes also referred to as “certificate of conduct”, “good-conduct certificate” or “police clearance certificate”. The Führungszeugnis is an official document issued on special green paper by the German Bundesamt für Justiz (Federal Office of Justice) in Bonn. It lists criminal offences above a certain threshold, usually if someone…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
September 25, 2018
Family LawInternational Divorce Cases

Questionnaires for German-British Divorce and Child Custody Matters

How to efficiently instruct a German Family Lawyer If a marriage goes sour and one spouse finally decides to ask a lawyer for advice, the client is usually rather emotional and nervous, especially when children are involved and the parents cannot agree amicably on where and with whom the children shall live for the time being. Thus, the client wants a reliable assessment of the legal situation. And he or she wants these answers fast.…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
August 4, 2017
Family LawGoing to court

Broken Engagement in Germany: Engagement Ring must be returned

May a bride keep the engagement ring under German family law rules? German law is very simple in regards to what happens to engagement gifts (especially engagement rings) if the the wedding is called off: They must be returned. Section 1301 German Civil Code (BGB) states: Section 1301: Return of the presents If the marriage does not take place, each engaged person may require the other to return what the former gave as a present or…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
September 12, 2016
Business in GermanyBusiness Tax & Fiscal ObligationsFamily LawGerman Corporate LawGerman Labor LawGerman LawGerman Probate

English Desk at German Law Firm Graf Partners LLP

The Munich and Regensburg based German law firm Graf & Partners LLP, established in 2003, specialises in providing professional legal services to English speaking clients, both business and private. Our British-German specialist teams of lawyers and linguists advise on all legal and tax issues connected to Germany and European Union law, from business, corporate and labour to international probate, family law and property. The English Desk in our Munich office is headed by dual qualified…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
August 3, 2016
Family LawGerman Succession & Inheritance Law

Living Will and Enduring Power of Attorney under German Law

How to set up Advance Directives for Medical Treatment under German law In Germany, it is rather common to set up a Power of Attorney (Vorsorgevollmacht) and/or a Living Will (Patientenverfügung). The formal requirements for both are quite simple. Whereas a Last Will (Testament) must either be written in the testators own hand or must be recorded in the presence of a German notary (details here), both an Enduring Power of Attorney as well as…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
July 23, 2015
Family Law

Challenging Paternity in Germany and the UK: Very Different Procedures

Am I really the father? How can I find out? Paternity tests under German law Imagine you get to know a woman at the birthday party of your best friend; it is love at first sight. A whirlwind romance begins and you decide to get married. Then your wife gives you the happy news that a child is under way.  After your child is born, your sweet little baby looks like the spitting image of…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
July 10, 2015
Family Law

How to Divorce a German (and where)

Reliable Expert Information on British-German Family Law from International Divorce Lawyers When a British-German or a US-German marriage starts to go south, the smart thing for each spouse to do is to get professional advice early on regarding what the differences would be if the divorce proceedings were carried out in England as compared to the divorce taking place in Germany. Which country's courts have jurisdiction over an international divorce is rather complicated and sometimes…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
January 30, 2015