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contentious probate Germany

German ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance LawInternational ProbateLitigation in Germany

GERMAN WILLS ARE OFTEN VOIDABLE

A child or surviving spouse can challenge a German Will made "too early" German laws of succession are full of surprises, even for German lawyers who do not specialise in estate and probate law. One of those German succession law statutes which create shock among the testamentary heirs and beneficiaries is sections 2079 German Civil Code (Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch).  The language of the statute is somewhat cryptic: A will is voidable if the testator has omitted a…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
April 9, 2020
German LawGerman ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance Law

Prove German Wills for English Probate

Are German wills recognised in Britain? To an English lawyer, a German style will is shockingly short and informal. Typical wording in a German will would be: "Testament: I appoint as my sole heir my dear son Franz Meyer. Munich, 24 December 2000, Fritz Meyer" Even the following text would satisfy the German Probate court that it constitutes a fully valid German will: "My Wife gets everything. Hans Muller" Yes, this is a valid German…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
January 23, 2015
Civil actionGerman ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance Law

Disputed Wills and Contentious Probate in Germany

German Litigation Expert Bernhard Schmeilzl of Graf Legal explains the Basics of Contentious Probate If it is unclear whether a last will is valid, it can get messy between the potential beneficiaries. In Germany, this is even more so because -- in contrast to the UK -- German law knows no administration of the estate by a personal representative. Instead, the heirs (in German: Erben) have the right to administer the estate themselves. Due to…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
July 11, 2014
German ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance LawGerman Tax Law

UK Citizens with Property in Germany: Do I need a separate Will?

The Basics of British-German Inheritance Cases When a British expat lives in Germany for some time, he or she will most probably have a German bank account and other German assets, maybe even have bought property over here. The majority of these British expats have never thought about the inheritance law implications of such foreign assets. They simply assume that UK law applies. This is, however, not always the case. Especially if German probate law…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
July 1, 2013