Succession and Notary: legal experts in estate settlement

Updated on Wednesday 13 April 2022

Inquire

Prepare its succession

Organize at the time of death

Heir

A question ? Need help ?

One of the co-heirs has accepted the succession but has not responded to reminders from the notary for several months. Can we still share?

Yes, but only under certain conditions. The defaulting co-owner, who is neither presumed absent nor unable to express his will due to removal, must then be given formal notice by extrajudicial act to be represented at the partition. The request must come from one of the co-sharers. If within three…
See more
I would like to have a will drawn up in order to bequeath my property to my godson. My notary is asking me to come to the meeting with 2 witnesses. Can my godson's wife be one of them?

No. Indeed, article 975 of the Civil Code specifies that legatees in any capacity whatsoever, as well as their relatives or allies up to the fourth degree, cannot be chosen as witnesses. The alliance being the bond that is established by marriage, the wife of your godchild cannot be a…
See more
Following the death of our father, my sister and I inherited some farmland over which the SAFER has a right of pre-emption. I want to sell my undivided shares to my sister.

[...] Will SAFER's right of pre-emption prevent her from acquiring my shares? No, the SAFER's right of pre-emption does not apply in this case, in application of the provisions of article L143-4 3° of the Code rural et de la pêche maritime, which stipulates that: "The following may not be…
See more
When settling an estate, I understand that the notary does not have to certify ownership of a property if it is sold within 10 months of the death. Is this true?

No. The purpose of the real estate certificate of ownership, published at the land registry office, is to record the transfer of ownership following a death. However, article 29, last paragraph, of decree no. 55-22 of January 4, 1955, states that it is possible not to issue such a certificate…
See more
I would like to have a will drawn up in order to bequeath my property to my godson. My notary is asking me to come to the meeting with 2 witnesses. Can my godson's wife be one of them?

No. Indeed, article 975 of the Civil Code specifies that legatees in any capacity whatsoever, as well as their relatives or allies up to the fourth degree, cannot be chosen as witnesses. The alliance being the bond that is established by marriage, the wife of your godchild cannot be a…
See more
My wife has just passed away. We owned our primary residence. As part of the inheritance tax declaration, am I obliged to apply the 20% deduction on the principal residence of the deceased? ?

Yes. The General Tax Code provides, for the calculation of inheritance tax, that buildings are valued according to their real market value on the date of death. But, with regard to the main residence of the deceased, article 764 bis of the CGI provides for the automatic application of a…
See more
My father passed away 4 months ago, leaving debts. Being the heir, I gave up on this succession. He was a tenant of his accommodation, and his landlord asked me to empty it. Am I required to do so?

No. By renouncing the succession of your father, you lose the title of heir in his succession. Consequently, you are not bound by any debt obligation, but in return, you lose all rights to his property. As the lease is automatically terminated following the death of your father, since no…
See more
I would like to draw up a notarial will to make one of my daughters a universal legatee. My notary is asking me to appoint two witnesses. Can I choose my daughter's PACS partner?

Yes, article 975 of the French Civil Code stipulates that "neither the legatees in any capacity whatsoever, nor their relatives or allies up to and including the fourth degree (...) may be taken as witnesses to the will by public deed". The PACS partner is neither a relative nor an…
See more
I just found out that my father passed away 12 years ago. We no longer had any contact due to a family disagreement. Can I claim my share in the estate after so many years?

In principle, you lose the status of heir if you have not opted within the period of 10 years from the opening of the succession, from the date of death. You are then deemed to renounce this succession (article 780 al. 1 and 2 of the Civil Code) However, if…
See more
I signed a revelation contract suggested by a genealogist at home yesterday. Upon reflection, I realize the payout percentage is too high. Can I retract and cancel everything ?

Yes. The revelation contract proposed by a genealogist is subject to consumer protection rules (Rep. Min. Pajon au JOAN du 23-10-2000 n° 50427), and consequently to the rules concerning door-to-door sales. You therefore have the 14-day withdrawal period provided for in Article L.221-18 of the Consumer Code applicable to contracts…
See more
When my father died, my mother-in-law received the usufruct of the entire estate, which consisted mainly of liquid assets. Today, she has just died, and the liquid assets have disappeared. What can I do to recover these sums?

When the spouse receives the usufruct of liquid assets, we speak of quasi-usufruct, i.e., a usufruct (right of use and enjoyment) of a thing that is consumed when used (money). In practical terms, the spouse has the right to spend the money, but is obliged to return it on his…
See more
My father has died, leaving three children and we find ourselves in undivided ownership of his house, which constituted. My eldest brother and I want to sell it. What should we do if our younger brother doesn't agree?

You each share one-third of the property. With your older brother, you therefore have a two-thirds majority. This quota is not without interest for a sale, since article 815-5-1 of the French Civil Code provides a solution to the lack of unanimity: "Except in the case of dismemberment of ownership…
See more
My father has passed away. He was the sole owner of a house where he lived with his wife. In his holographic will, he deprived her of her legal rights to the estate and gave her the usufruct of his movable property. Can she continue to live in the house?

Yes. Article 764 of the Civil Code provides for the benefit of the surviving spouse a right of habitation to the accommodation which he occupied as his principal residence at the time of death, and a right of use to the furniture within the latter. It can only be deprived…
See more
My husband passed away. He was a state employee. Is the death capital paid by his employer subject to an inheritance tax ?

No. The death benefit, paid under conditions and the amount of which varies according to whether the civil servant died before or after the minimum retirement age, "is not subject to transfer duties in the event of death", i.e. inheritance rights (article D712-23 of the Social Security Code).
See more
We are a family of 4 siblings. The eldest is single without children and wishes to bequeath all her property to her nephews and nieces. Does she have the right to do so?

Yes. A person can freely dispose of all their assets by will, as long as they have no compulsory heirs. The beneficiaries are the children (article 913 of the Civil Code) or their descendants in the event of predecease (article 913-1 of the Civil Code), and in the absence of…
See more
My father passed away 4 months ago, leaving debts. Being the heir, I gave up on this succession. He was a tenant of his accommodation, and his landlord asked me to empty it. Am I required to do so?

No. By renouncing the succession of your father, you lose the title of heir in his succession. Consequently, you are not bound by any debt obligation, but in return, you lose all rights to his property. As the lease is automatically terminated following the death of your father, since no…
See more
Following the death of our parents, we signed an act of sharing with my sisters. Two days later, one of them came to the family home to claim a property that had been assigned to me. Does she have the right to do so?

No. Following the partition, each co-heir is deemed to have succeeded alone and immediately to all the effects included in his lot and cannot take ownership of the other assets of the succession (art. 883 C. civ.). Consequently, it is not possible for a co-partitioner to appropriate property attributed to…
See more
My son passed away. He was married and had a daughter. My daughter-in-law opted for the usufruct of the entire estate of her late husband, which only includes money. The notary told my granddaughter that she would not receive the money ...

... from this inheritance until her mother passed away. Is this true? Yes. In theory, the usufructuary cannot dispose of the property of the concerned usufruct. However, the Civil Code allows an exception when the usufruct includes elements that cannot be used without consuming them, such as money. In which…
See more
The father of my child, a minor, has passed away. He was a big spender and I know that he had applied for an over indebtedness procedure. I would like to renounce the estate in my child's name. What is the procedure?

To renounce an estate in the name of a minor, you must first obtain the agreement of the family affairs judge acting as guardianship judge at your local court. To do so, you need to send him or her a request using the Cerfa form n°15811*03. Once the authorization has…
See more
My father has just passed away. He had drawn up his own will and then entrusted it to his notary. For the settlement of the succession, is the depositary notary obliged to record the opening of the will on death and if so, within what time frame?

Yes. The law provides that the notary depositary of the holographic will, draws up a report "on the spot" of the opening and status of the will, specifying the circumstances of its deposit. The original of the will is appended to the minutes. These documents are then maintained in the…
See more
My father has just passed away. He had very little wealth. Am I required to have an act of notoriety to unlock my bank assets?

Everything will depend on the total amount of the deceased's financial assets. To be able to obtain the payment of the funds, you must provide the bank with an affidavit drawn up by a notary if the amount is greater than 5000 euros. On the other hand, if the amount…
See more
Following the death of our parents, we signed an act of sharing with my sisters. Two days later, one of them came to the family home to claim a property that had been assigned to me. Does she have the right to do so?

No. Following the partition, each co-heir is deemed to have succeeded alone and immediately to all the effects included in his lot and cannot take ownership of the other assets of the succession (art. 883 C. civ.). Consequently, it is not possible for a co-partitioner to appropriate property attributed to…
See more
Following their divorce, my father paid his ex-wife a compensatory allowance, in the form of an annuity. He has passed away. I learned that she was going to receive a survivor's pension. Are these two services cumulative?

No. When the compensatory allowance was paid in the form of an annuity, at the time of the death of the debtor spouse, in principle it is immediately payable in the form of a lump sum. Reversion pensions are deducted from the amount of this compensatory allowance (art. 280-1 and…
See more
My partner appointed me as the sole legatee of his property upon his death. Can his brothers and sisters still take over the property he received from their parents, by inheritance?

No. The universal legacy makes it possible to set aside the right of return of the brothers and sisters, including if it is made for the benefit of the Civil Union partner of the testator (art. 757-3 C. civ. et Cass. Civ. 1e, 28 Jan. 2015, n°14-20.587).
See more
Who owns the furniture in a usufructuary apartment?

Gift-sharing: My wife owns a house, while her mother has the usufruct of one of the 2 apartments. Who will own the furniture when her mother dies? the bare owner or the heirs? If the gift concerns real estate, the furniture is not included in the gift unless this was…
See more
My aunt passed away. I am the only heir. I found out that she had a lot of debt and I want to renounce her estate. I am a foreign resident. Do I have to return to France to proceed with the waiver?

No. To be enforceable against third parties, the renunciation of an inheritance must be formalized with the judicial court of the last domicile of the deceased, by filing or sending a simple letter which is duly completed, Cerfa 15828*05 form. One must also attach a full copy of the death…
See more
My father owned and operated a farm. My brother participated in this activity without being paid but received the profits from the exploitation. Can he claim a deferred salary as part of our father's estate?

No. To be able to benefit from a deferred salary claim, the descendants of the deceased farmer must be over the age of 18 and participate directly and effectively in the operation. However, they must not have been associated with profits and losses, nor received salaries in cash (L.321-13 C…
See more
Following the death of my mother, I inherited her apartment. I wish to sell it. What is the acquisition value to be used in order to determine the amount of the real estate capital gain?

The capital gain carried out on the sale of a property is equal to the difference between the sale price and the acquisition price. When the property was received following a death, the acquisition price corresponds to the value retained in the declaration of succession (art. 150 VB, I, CGI).
See more
I have drawn up my will and filed it with the notary. I forgot to number the sheets and indicate the contact details of the notary. Is it still valid?

Yes. The conditions of validity of the holograph will are provided for in article 970 of the Civil Code: it must be written by the hand of the testator, dated, and signed. It specifies that it is not subject to any other form.
See more
I found out that all the heirs of my tenant who died 6 months ago have decided to renounce his estate. The apartment is still furnished with furniture from my former tenant. Can I get rid of it?

No. A landlord cannot himself recover the accommodation and get rid of the furniture of his deceased tenant. When there is no known heir and if the rental contract has ended, the owner must first obtain a court decision (article 1324 of the Code of Civil Procedure). The costs of…
See more
Both my grandparents died in a house fire. They were married without a contract. How will their estates be settled?

If two individuals die in the same event, and each was entitled to inherit from the other, as often occurs with spouses, each estate is settled according to the order of death (Art. 725-1 C. civ.). This order can be established by any means. If it is impossible to determine…
See more
My partner to whom I was not married has passed away. He had entered into a mandate for future protection and appointed our daughter as mandatary. This convention has never been implemented. Can my daughter invoke it to settle the estate on her own?

No. The purpose of the mandate for future protection is to allow a designated person (the mandatary) to represent the mandator who could no longer provide for his interests alone (article 477 of the Civil Code). This mandate ends on the death of the principal, whether it has been implemented…
See more
I signed a revelation contract suggested by a genealogist at home yesterday. Upon reflection, I realize the payout percentage is too high. Can I retract and cancel everything ?

Yes. The revelation contract proposed by a genealogist is subject to consumer protection rules (Rep. Min. Pajon au JOAN du 23-10-2000 n° 50427), and consequently to the rules concerning door-to-door sales. You therefore have the 14-day withdrawal period provided for in Article L.221-18 of the Consumer Code applicable to contracts…
See more
My father has just passed away. He had very little wealth. Am I required to have an act of notoriety to unlock my bank assets?

Everything will depend on the total amount of the deceased's financial assets. To be able to obtain the payment of the funds, you must provide the bank with an affidavit drawn up by a notary if the amount is greater than 5000 euros. On the other hand, if the amount…
See more
I became the usufructuary of my spouse's property upon his/her death. Do I have to declare the value of freehold assets to calculate the IFI?

No, if the dismemberment of ownership results from the option exercised within the framework of your legal rights (article 757 of the Civil Code), you only declare the value of the usufruct. This value is determined according to the scale of article 669 of the General Tax Code, according to…
See more
My father just passed away and we are three of his children. He had drawn up a will that benefited me to the detriment of my brothers and sisters. The latter are contesting his will. Can they do so?

No. It is perfectly possible to break the equality between heirs. However, the notary will have to ensure that your share does not encroach on the hereditary reserve of your coheirs. If this is the case, they will be entitled to claim, "financial compensation" from you, known as a "reduction…
See more
A few years ago, my mother signed a mandate for future protection and appointed me as her proxy. Today, she seems to be losing her memory and isn't always aware of what she's doing. How do I go about implementing this measure?

If it appears that your mother is no longer capable of looking after her own interests, you must inform her of your intention to implement the mandate. Her condition must then be certified by a doctor chosen from a list drawn up by the public prosecutor. This medical certificate and…
See more
My father has died, leaving three children and we find ourselves in undivided ownership of his house, which constituted. My eldest brother and I want to sell it. What should we do if our younger brother doesn't agree?

You each share one-third of the property. With your older brother, you therefore have a two-thirds majority. This quota is not without interest for a sale, since article 815-5-1 of the French Civil Code provides a solution to the lack of unanimity: "Except in the case of dismemberment of ownership…
See more
Following the death of our parents, my brothers and I became joint owners of a property located in a condominium. The general meeting of co-owners is due to be held soon. Can each of us take part in the vote, given that we don't get along?

No. When a condominium is held by undivided co-owners, the indivision as a whole is represented by a joint agent chosen by the undivided co-owners. In the case of a disagreement, the representative is appointed by the president of the court to which the matter has been referred either by…
See more
My father has just passed away. I am currently involved in a dispute with my brother who believes that I have been advantaged because our father financed my higher education. Are these amounts reportable to the estate?

No. In principle, the law provides that education costs are not reportable to the estate (article 852 of the Civil Code), just like the costs of food, maintenance, learning, ordinary equipment costs, wedding gifts and usual gifts. However, this legal exemption from reporting to the estate only applies if your…
See more
My husband and I have been living apart for several years and no longer have any contact. I found out that he's started a new life. Is it possible to deprive him of all the rights to my estate?

No. Subject to the absence of children and the predecease of the deceased's father and mother, the surviving (non-divorced) spouse is entitled to the full inheritance of his or her spouse (art. 757-2 C. civ.). Although you can reduce your husband's rights by bequeathing your assets to whomever you wish…
See more
My aunt is going to lend me some money. We have planned for me to repay it in monthly installments over a period of 5 years. A loan deed will be regularized by a notary. If she dies before this term (...)

do her children have the right to demand that I pay them the outstanding amount in one go? No. On the death of a person, the rights, and shares that he held during his lifetime are automatically transmitted to his heirs (art. 724 C. civ.). The Court of Cassation deduces…
See more
We applied for guardianship of my father. Is it up to us to pay the guardian?

No. If the measure of guardianship is entrusted to a member of the family, it is then exercised free of charge. Sometimes, the guardianship judge or the family council, realizing the importance of the property which needs to be managed or the difficulty of exercising the measure, may award compensation…
See more
When my father died, my mother-in-law received the usufruct of the entire estate, which consisted mainly of liquid assets. Today, she has just died, and the liquid assets have disappeared. What can I do to recover these sums?

When the spouse receives the usufruct of liquid assets, we speak of quasi-usufruct, i.e., a usufruct (right of use and enjoyment) of a thing that is consumed when used (money). In practical terms, the spouse has the right to spend the money, but is obliged to return it on his…
See more
Following the death of my mother, I inherited her apartment. I wish to sell it. What is the acquisition value to be used in order to determine the amount of the real estate capital gain?

The capital gain carried out on the sale of a property is equal to the difference between the sale price and the acquisition price. When the property was received following a death, the acquisition price corresponds to the value retained in the declaration of succession (art. 150 VB, I, CGI).
See more
My mother is a widow, and I am her only child. She received the ASPA (non-contributory provident benefit). Will I have to repay this assistance when she passes away?

Yes but, only if the net assets of the estate exceed 39,000 euros (art. D.815-4 of the Social Security Code). The net estate assets correspond to the difference between the gross assets, made up of the property, rights and claims belonging to the deceased and the debts for which the…
See more
I plan to have a mandate for future protection drawn up by my notary. Is it true that this warrant cannot be challenged once activated?

No. The future protection mandate allows you to designate in advance one or more people to represent you, in the event that you or you are no longer able to provide for your interests alone. However, the law provides for cases of termination of the mandate (article 483 of the…
See more
I just found out that my father passed away 12 years ago. We no longer had any contact due to a family disagreement. Can I claim my share in the estate after so many years?

In principle, you lose the status of heir if you have not opted within the period of 10 years from the opening of the succession, from the date of death. You are then deemed to renounce this succession (article 780 al. 1 and 2 of the Civil Code) However, if…
See more
Following their divorce, my father paid his ex-wife a compensatory allowance, in the form of an annuity. He has passed away. I learned that she was going to receive a survivor's pension. Are these two services cumulative?

No. When the compensatory allowance was paid in the form of an annuity, at the time of the death of the debtor spouse, in principle it is immediately payable in the form of a lump sum. Reversion pensions are deducted from the amount of this compensatory allowance (art. 280-1 and…
See more
My parents having had 4 children, they obtained social housing with 5 rooms about thirty years ago. After the death of my father, my mother stayed in this apartment, and I came to live with her a year and a half ago. She passed away and I want to (...)

...take over her lease. Is it possible? It depends. Indeed, on the death of the tenant, the rental contract can be transferred to the descendants who lived with him for at least one year on the date of death (art. 14 law n ° 89-462 of July 6, 1989), including…
See more
My husband passed away. He was a state employee. Is the death capital paid by his employer subject to an inheritance tax ?

No. The death benefit, paid under conditions and the amount of which varies according to whether the civil servant died before or after the minimum retirement age, "is not subject to transfer duties in the event of death", i.e. inheritance rights (article D712-23 of the Social Security Code).
See more
My cousin passed away. She was married but separated from her spouse. She had no children, no siblings and her parents passed away as well. In her will, she bequeathed all of her real estate to me. My notary tells me that if I give up (...)

... her property will revert to her spouse. Is it correct? Yes. Renunciation of a bequest has the effect of rendering the testamentary disposition null and void (art. 1043 C. civ.). The devolution of inheritance then takes place as if this provision had never existed. Since your cousin has no…
See more
Following the death of my ex-husband, a civil servant, I benefit from a survivor's pension. I'm in a relationship again, but we don't live together. Will I lose the benefit of this right?

No. Article L.46 of the Code of civil and military retirement pensions provides that a divorced spouse who lives in notorious cohabitation loses his right to a pension. However, for a union to be qualified as concubinage, there must be a community of life. Two people in a couple who…
See more
My brother and I shall inherit from our father who has just passed away. As the guardian of my weaker adult brother, am I required to go to the judge to accept the inheritance on his behalf?

No, if the value of the estate's assets is clearly greater than the amount of the debts, you can simply accept the inheritance without the judge's authorization. However, you must first and foremost obtain a certificate drawn up by the notary in charge of settling the succession establishing that the…
See more
My mother, a French citizen, passed away in Germany, where she had been living for several years. Which law applies to her estate?

It depends. If your mother has not drawn up a will in which she chooses her national law, the European Inheritance Regulation (n°650/2012 of July 4, 2012) must be applied. This regulation mentions that the applicable law is the of the country in which the deceased resided. Your mother's estate…
See more
Our father (debirentier) predeceased the sellers (crédirentiers) of the property he bought as a life annuity. As the deceased's heir, do I have to continue paying the annuities until the sellers die?

Yes. As part of your father's estate, you inherited the property he had purchased as a life annuity, as well as the related debts. It is therefore your responsibility to continue paying the annuities until the death of the seller.
See more
Our father (debirentier) predeceased the sellers (crédirentiers) of the property he bought as a life annuity. As the deceased's heir, do I have to continue paying the annuities until the sellers die?

Yes. As part of your father's estate, you inherited the property he had purchased as a life annuity, as well as the related debts. It is therefore your responsibility to continue paying the annuities until the death of the seller.
See more
I became the usufructuary of my spouse's property upon his/her death. Do I have to declare the value of freehold assets to calculate the IFI?

No, if the dismemberment of ownership results from the option exercised within the framework of your legal rights (article 757 of the Civil Code), you only declare the value of the usufruct. This value is determined according to the scale of article 669 of the General Tax Code, according to…
See more
My aunt passed away. She wasn't married and had no children. She had planned to leave her house to me. The notary with whom she had deposited her will, told me that she had taken it back. How do I know that they’re telling the truth?

When a notary is entrusted with a will, it is registered in the central register of last wills and testaments, unless the testator objects (Art. 4.1.b of the Basel Convention of May 16, 1972, on the Establishment of a Scheme of Registration of Wills). If the will has been registered…
See more
The father of my child, a minor, has passed away. He was a big spender and I know that he had applied for an over indebtedness procedure. I would like to renounce the estate in my child's name. What is the procedure?

To renounce an estate in the name of a minor, you must first obtain the agreement of the family affairs judge acting as guardianship judge at your local court. To do so, you need to send him or her a request using the Cerfa form n°15811*03. Once the authorization has…
See more
I found out that all the heirs of my tenant who died 6 months ago have decided to renounce his estate. The apartment is still furnished with furniture from my former tenant. Can I get rid of it?

No. A landlord cannot himself recover the accommodation and get rid of the furniture of his deceased tenant. When there is no known heir and if the rental contract has ended, the owner must first obtain a court decision (article 1324 of the Code of Civil Procedure). The costs of…
See more
I wish to grant a loan of €60,000 to one of my children Am I obliged to call on my notary to draw up the loan contract?

No, but it is preferable. In accordance with article 1359 of the civil code, a writing is required when the sum lent is greater than 1500 €. The use of a notary is recommended to avoid any dispute, especially between your heirs. Indeed, you are assured that the deed will…
See more
My grandfather plans to give me one of his plots of land that I farm. He wants to include a right of return for my sister so that the land does not revert to my wife on my death.

The notary refuses to include this in the deed of gift. Why? In accordance with article 951 of the Civil Code, "the donor may mention the right of return of the objects donated either in the case of the death of the donee alone, or in the event of the…
See more
My nephews renounced their father's estate 10 years ago. Their grandfather passed away last year. His house has just been sold. Can they perceive the share that should have gone to their father?

Yes. Article 754 paragraph 4 of the Civil Code provides that one can represent the person whose inheritance has been renounced. Even if the children have renounced the estate of their predeceased father, they can re present him in the estate of their grandfather.
See more
My husband has passed away. As part of his support obligation, he paid his parents a sum every month to help them pay for their retirement home (EPHAD). Will I have to continue paying it?

It depends. The law stipulates that daughters-in-law and sons-in-law are obliged to help their parents-in-law materially and financially as part of the obligation to provide support (art. 206 C. civ.). The death of your husband does not terminate this obligation (Lyon Jan. 25, 1967). On the other hand, if you…
See more
When settling an estate, I understand that the notary does not have to certify ownership of a property if it is sold within 10 months of the death. Is this true?

No. The purpose of the real estate certificate of ownership, published at the land registry office, is to record the transfer of ownership following a death. However, article 29, last paragraph, of decree no. 55-22 of January 4, 1955, states that it is possible not to issue such a certificate…
See more
I plan to have a mandate for future protection drawn up by my notary. Is it true that this warrant cannot be challenged once activated?

No. The future protection mandate allows you to designate in advance one or more people to represent you, in the event that you or you are no longer able to provide for your interests alone. However, the law provides for cases of termination of the mandate (article 483 of the…
See more
My grandfather plans to give me one of his plots of land that I farm. He wants to include a right of return for my sister so that the land does not revert to my wife on my death.

The notary refuses to include this in the deed of gift. Why? In accordance with article 951 of the Civil Code, "the donor may mention the right of return of the objects donated either in the case of the death of the donee alone, or in the event of the…
See more
I have drafted my will, can I keep it at home?

Yes. You can keep your holographic will at home. But by doing so, you take the risk that it will not be discovered when you die or that one of your relatives will make it disappear. As a precaution, you can give it to a notary and ask them to…
See more
We are a family of 4 siblings. The eldest is single without children and wishes to bequeath all her property to her nephews and nieces. Does she have the right to do so?

Yes. A person can freely dispose of all their assets by will, as long as they have no compulsory heirs. The beneficiaries are the children (article 913 of the Civil Code) or their descendants in the event of predecease (article 913-1 of the Civil Code), and in the absence of…
See more
My parents having had 4 children, they obtained social housing with 5 rooms about thirty years ago. After the death of my father, my mother stayed in this apartment, and I came to live with her a year and a half ago. She passed away and I want to (...)

...take over her lease. Is it possible? It depends. Indeed, on the death of the tenant, the rental contract can be transferred to the descendants who lived with him for at least one year on the date of death (art. 14 law n ° 89-462 of July 6, 1989), including…
See more
I would like to draw up a notarial will to make one of my daughters a universal legatee. My notary is asking me to appoint two witnesses. Can I choose my daughter's PACS partner?

Yes, article 975 of the French Civil Code stipulates that "neither the legatees in any capacity whatsoever, nor their relatives or allies up to and including the fourth degree (...) may be taken as witnesses to the will by public deed". The PACS partner is neither a relative nor an…
See more
My brother and I shall inherit from our father who has just passed away. As the guardian of my weaker adult brother, am I required to go to the judge to accept the inheritance on his behalf?

No, if the value of the estate's assets is clearly greater than the amount of the debts, you can simply accept the inheritance without the judge's authorization. However, you must first and foremost obtain a certificate drawn up by the notary in charge of settling the succession establishing that the…
See more
I was the bare owner of a house, the usufructuary has just passed away. Does my notary have to take steps with the land registration service?

No. In the case mentioned, there is no legal obligation to advertise with the land advertisement service. The death of the usufructuary will simply be mentioned in the next deed of disposal subject to publication relating to this house (example: a sale), by the former bare owner who has become…
See more
My husband has passed away. As part of his support obligation, he paid his parents a sum every month to help them pay for their retirement home (EPHAD). Will I have to continue paying it?

It depends. The law stipulates that daughters-in-law and sons-in-law are obliged to help their parents-in-law materially and financially as part of the obligation to provide support (art. 206 C. civ.). The death of your husband does not terminate this obligation (Lyon Jan. 25, 1967). On the other hand, if you…
See more
My ex-husband passed away. He was very spendthrift. As the legal representative of our minor child, I am considering making an acceptance up to the net assets on his behalf. Is the authorization of the guardianship judge obligatory?

No. Acceptance up to the amount of the net assets makes it possible to limit the patrimonial risks for the heir since he is not liable for the debts of the deceased, on his personal assets. As long as this acceptance does not present a risk for the minor to…
See more
We applied for guardianship of my father. Is it up to us to pay the guardian?

No. If the measure of guardianship is entrusted to a member of the family, it is then exercised free of charge. Sometimes, the guardianship judge or the family council, realizing the importance of the property which needs to be managed or the difficulty of exercising the measure, may award compensation…
See more
My son passed away. He was married and had a daughter. My daughter-in-law opted for the usufruct of the entire estate of her late husband, which only includes money. The notary told my granddaughter that she would not receive the money ...

... from this inheritance until her mother passed away. Is this true? Yes. In theory, the usufructuary cannot dispose of the property of the concerned usufruct. However, the Civil Code allows an exception when the usufruct includes elements that cannot be used without consuming them, such as money. In which…
See more
My aunt passed away. She wasn't married and had no children. She had planned to leave her house to me. The notary with whom she had deposited her will, told me that she had taken it back. How do I know that they’re telling the truth?

When a notary is entrusted with a will, it is registered in the central register of last wills and testaments, unless the testator objects (Art. 4.1.b of the Basel Convention of May 16, 1972, on the Establishment of a Scheme of Registration of Wills). If the will has been registered…
See more
My father passed away 3 months ago. My mother opted for the usufruct. My brothers and I are liable for inheritance tax. I'd like to ask the tax department to defer payment until the day the usufruct ends. Should my brothers also request this ?

No. You may be the only one to opt for deferred payment of inheritance tax. However, it is imperative that your brothers give their express agreement to this request, and that they declare that they have been informed that, in the event of default on your part, they remain liable…
See more
My grandfather has just passed away. He has left my aunt, my brother and me as heirs. In his will, he indicated that the available portion would go to his daughter. The notary tells me that my aunt is entitled to 2/3 of the inheritance. Is this true?

Yes. In accordance with Article 734 of the French Civil Code, in the absence of a surviving spouse, children and their descendants constitute the first order of heirs. Article 913-1 of the Civil Code specifies that all descendants are included under the term 'children,' “even though they are to be…
See more
My father has just passed away. He had drawn up his own will and then entrusted it to his notary. For the settlement of the succession, is the depositary notary obliged to record the opening of the will on death and if so, within what time frame?

Yes. The law provides that the notary depositary of the holographic will, draws up a report "on the spot" of the opening and status of the will, specifying the circumstances of its deposit. The original of the will is appended to the minutes. These documents are then maintained in the…
See more
My ex-husband passed away. He was very spendthrift. As the legal representative of our minor child, I am considering making an acceptance up to the net assets on his behalf. Is the authorization of the guardianship judge obligatory?

No. Acceptance up to the amount of the net assets makes it possible to limit the patrimonial risks for the heir since he is not liable for the debts of the deceased, on his personal assets. As long as this acceptance does not present a risk for the minor to…
See more
Following my mother's death, the notary is requesting my parents' family record book to settle the estate. Unable to provide it, the notary is considering calling in a genealogist. Is this the usual procedure?

Yes, the notary in charge of settling an estate must establish the devolution of the estate (identification of heirs and indication of their legal share). In your case, the latter must ensure that your mother had no children other except you. Its role is all the more important as it…
See more
My father passed away 3 months ago. My mother opted for the usufruct. My brothers and I are liable for inheritance tax. I'd like to ask the tax department to defer payment until the day the usufruct ends. Should my brothers also request this ?

No. You may be the only one to opt for deferred payment of inheritance tax. However, it is imperative that your brothers give their express agreement to this request, and that they declare that they have been informed that, in the event of default on your part, they remain liable…
See more
My grandfather has just passed away. He has left my aunt, my brother and me as heirs. In his will, he indicated that the available portion would go to his daughter. The notary tells me that my aunt is entitled to 2/3 of the inheritance. Is this true?

Yes. In accordance with Article 734 of the French Civil Code, in the absence of a surviving spouse, children and their descendants constitute the first order of heirs. Article 913-1 of the Civil Code specifies that all descendants are included under the term 'children,' “even though they are to be…
See more
My wife has just passed away. We owned our primary residence. As part of the inheritance tax declaration, am I obliged to apply the 20% deduction on the principal residence of the deceased? ?

Yes. The General Tax Code provides, for the calculation of inheritance tax, that buildings are valued according to their real market value on the date of death. But, with regard to the main residence of the deceased, article 764 bis of the CGI provides for the automatic application of a…
See more
My partner appointed me as the sole legatee of his property upon his death. Can his brothers and sisters still take over the property he received from their parents, by inheritance?

No. The universal legacy makes it possible to set aside the right of return of the brothers and sisters, including if it is made for the benefit of the Civil Union partner of the testator (art. 757-3 C. civ. et Cass. Civ. 1e, 28 Jan. 2015, n°14-20.587).
See more
Who owns the furniture in a usufructuary apartment?

Gift-sharing: My wife owns a house, while her mother has the usufruct of one of the 2 apartments. Who will own the furniture when her mother dies? the bare owner or the heirs? If the gift concerns real estate, the furniture is not included in the gift unless this was…
See more
Our father passed away. He had remarried and we are 3 children from the first marriage. Our mother-in-law refuses to disclose the information she has on our father's bank accounts. Can the notary in charge of the succession identify them?

Notre père est décédé. Il était remarié et nous sommes 3 enfants du premier lit. Notre belle-mère refuse de communiquer les informations qu’elle détient sur les comptes bancaires de notre père. Le notaire en charge de la succession peut-il les identifier ? Yes. Indeed, law n° 2014-617 of June 13…
See more
Following the death of my ex-husband, a civil servant, I benefit from a survivor's pension. I'm in a relationship again, but we don't live together. Will I lose the benefit of this right?

No. Article L.46 of the Code of civil and military retirement pensions provides that a divorced spouse who lives in notorious cohabitation loses his right to a pension. However, for a union to be qualified as concubinage, there must be a community of life. Two people in a couple who…
See more
My husband passed away 1 year ago. Our main residence belonged jointly to my husband and his brother. Can I take advantage of the lifetime right of article 764 of the Civil Code as a surviving spouse?

No. To be able to benefit from the lifetime right provided for by article 764 of the Civil Code, the accommodation must belong to the spouses or depend totally on the estate. However, if the accommodation was held by the deceased in joint ownership with a third party, the spouse…
See more
My father just passed away and we are three of his children. He had drawn up a will that benefited me to the detriment of my brothers and sisters. The latter are contesting his will. Can they do so?

No. It is perfectly possible to break the equality between heirs. However, the notary will have to ensure that your share does not encroach on the hereditary reserve of your coheirs. If this is the case, they will be entitled to claim, "financial compensation" from you, known as a "reduction…
See more
My best friend passed away recently. He was single, childless and under guardianship. Supervision was exercised by a legal representative for the protection of individuals. Can the guardian seize a notary to take care of his estate?

Yes. In the event of the death of an adult who is the subject of a protective measure exercised by a legal representative for the protection of adults, the latter may, in the absence of known heirs, seize the notary of the deceased through a view of settling the estate…
See more
My aunt is going to lend me some money. We have planned for me to repay it in monthly installments over a period of 5 years. A loan deed will be regularized by a notary. If she dies before this term (...)

do her children have the right to demand that I pay them the outstanding amount in one go? No. On the death of a person, the rights, and shares that he held during his lifetime are automatically transmitted to his heirs (art. 724 C. civ.). The Court of Cassation deduces…
See more
I have drafted my will, can I keep it at home?

Yes. You can keep your holographic will at home. But by doing so, you take the risk that it will not be discovered when you die or that one of your relatives will make it disappear. As a precaution, you can give it to a notary and ask them to…
See more
My mother, a French citizen, passed away in Germany, where she had been living for several years. Which law applies to her estate?

It depends. If your mother has not drawn up a will in which she chooses her national law, the European Inheritance Regulation (n°650/2012 of July 4, 2012) must be applied. This regulation mentions that the applicable law is the of the country in which the deceased resided. Your mother's estate…
See more
My best friend passed away recently. He was single, childless and under guardianship. Supervision was exercised by a legal representative for the protection of individuals. Can the guardian seize a notary to take care of his estate?

Yes. In the event of the death of an adult who is the subject of a protective measure exercised by a legal representative for the protection of adults, the latter may, in the absence of known heirs, seize the notary of the deceased through a view of settling the estate…
See more
Containment: How can you draw out an emergency will?

Notaries continue to advise their clients on their testamentary dispositions. In case of emergency and necessity, they may have to travel to collect an authentic will for clients who are very sick or even at the end of their life. All in compliance with the regulations and sanitary rules, which…
See more
Following the death of our father, my sister and I inherited some farmland over which the SAFER has a right of pre-emption. I want to sell my undivided shares to my sister.

[...] Will SAFER's right of pre-emption prevent her from acquiring my shares? No, the SAFER's right of pre-emption does not apply in this case, in application of the provisions of article L143-4 3° of the Code rural et de la pêche maritime, which stipulates that: "The following may not be…
See more
My husband and I have been living apart for several years and no longer have any contact. I found out that he's started a new life. Is it possible to deprive him of all the rights to my estate?

No. Subject to the absence of children and the predecease of the deceased's father and mother, the surviving (non-divorced) spouse is entitled to the full inheritance of his or her spouse (art. 757-2 C. civ.). Although you can reduce your husband's rights by bequeathing your assets to whomever you wish…
See more
I wish to grant a loan of €60,000 to one of my children Am I obliged to call on my notary to draw up the loan contract?

No, but it is preferable. In accordance with article 1359 of the civil code, a writing is required when the sum lent is greater than 1500 €. The use of a notary is recommended to avoid any dispute, especially between your heirs. Indeed, you are assured that the deed will…
See more
My father has passed away. He was the sole owner of a house where he lived with his wife. In his holographic will, he deprived her of her legal rights to the estate and gave her the usufruct of his movable property. Can she continue to live in the house?

Yes. Article 764 of the Civil Code provides for the benefit of the surviving spouse a right of habitation to the accommodation which he occupied as his principal residence at the time of death, and a right of use to the furniture within the latter. It can only be deprived…
See more
My husband passed away 1 year ago. Our main residence belonged jointly to my husband and his brother. Can I take advantage of the lifetime right of article 764 of the Civil Code as a surviving spouse?

No. To be able to benefit from the lifetime right provided for by article 764 of the Civil Code, the accommodation must belong to the spouses or depend totally on the estate. However, if the accommodation was held by the deceased in joint ownership with a third party, the spouse…
See more
Both my grandparents died in a house fire. They were married without a contract. How will their estates be settled?

If two individuals die in the same event, and each was entitled to inherit from the other, as often occurs with spouses, each estate is settled according to the order of death (Art. 725-1 C. civ.). This order can be established by any means. If it is impossible to determine…
See more
My partner to whom I was not married has passed away. He had entered into a mandate for future protection and appointed our daughter as mandatary. This convention has never been implemented. Can my daughter invoke it to settle the estate on her own?

No. The purpose of the mandate for future protection is to allow a designated person (the mandatary) to represent the mandator who could no longer provide for his interests alone (article 477 of the Civil Code). This mandate ends on the death of the principal, whether it has been implemented…
See more
My father has just passed away. I am currently involved in a dispute with my brother who believes that I have been advantaged because our father financed my higher education. Are these amounts reportable to the estate?

No. In principle, the law provides that education costs are not reportable to the estate (article 852 of the Civil Code), just like the costs of food, maintenance, learning, ordinary equipment costs, wedding gifts and usual gifts. However, this legal exemption from reporting to the estate only applies if your…
See more
Following my mother's death, the notary is requesting my parents' family record book to settle the estate. Unable to provide it, the notary is considering calling in a genealogist. Is this the usual procedure?

Yes, the notary in charge of settling an estate must establish the devolution of the estate (identification of heirs and indication of their legal share). In your case, the latter must ensure that your mother had no children other except you. Its role is all the more important as it…
See more
My nephews renounced their father's estate 10 years ago. Their grandfather passed away last year. His house has just been sold. Can they perceive the share that should have gone to their father?

Yes. Article 754 paragraph 4 of the Civil Code provides that one can represent the person whose inheritance has been renounced. Even if the children have renounced the estate of their predeceased father, they can re present him in the estate of their grandfather.
See more
I drew up a holograph will a long time ago and now I don't know what I've done with it. I've recently drawn up a new one. Does it automatically cancel the previous will?

No. If you do not specify in your last will and testament that it cancels any prior arrangements you may have made, these will be enforceable insofar as they do not conflict with your last will and testament.
See more
My aunt passed away. I am the only heir. I found out that she had a lot of debt and I want to renounce her estate. I am a foreign resident. Do I have to return to France to proceed with the waiver?

No. To be enforceable against third parties, the renunciation of an inheritance must be formalized with the judicial court of the last domicile of the deceased, by filing or sending a simple letter which is duly completed, Cerfa 15828*05 form. One must also attach a full copy of the death…
See more
My husband was retired. He passed away and left a huge debt. I plan to renounce his succession. Am I still entitled to the survivor's pension?

Yes. By renouncing the succession of your spouse, you lose the status of heir (article 805 of the Civil Code). On the other hand, you retain the status of spouse. However, the survivor's pension is a right reserved for the spouse or ex-spouse in the event of the death of…
See more
My mother is a widow, and I am her only child. She received the ASPA (non-contributory provident benefit). Will I have to repay this assistance when she passes away?

Yes but, only if the net assets of the estate exceed 39,000 euros (art. D.815-4 of the Social Security Code). The net estate assets correspond to the difference between the gross assets, made up of the property, rights and claims belonging to the deceased and the debts for which the…
See more
A few years ago, my mother signed a mandate for future protection and appointed me as her proxy. Today, she seems to be losing her memory and isn't always aware of what she's doing. How do I go about implementing this measure?

If it appears that your mother is no longer capable of looking after her own interests, you must inform her of your intention to implement the mandate. Her condition must then be certified by a doctor chosen from a list drawn up by the public prosecutor. This medical certificate and…
See more
We have just inherited a house through joint possession with my brothers and sisters. Is it true that we have five years to share?

No. While the Civil Code provides that partition may be requested at any given time, it does not impose a maximum duration. The co-owners can even decide to conclude an agreement of joint ownership between them relating to the management of the joint goods. Its duration is limited to 5…
See more
Containment: How can you draw out an emergency will?

Notaries continue to advise their clients on their testamentary dispositions. In case of emergency and necessity, they may have to travel to collect an authentic will for clients who are very sick or even at the end of their life. All in compliance with the regulations and sanitary rules, which…
See more
My cousin passed away. She was married but separated from her spouse. She had no children, no siblings and her parents passed away as well. In her will, she bequeathed all of her real estate to me. My notary tells me that if I give up (...)

... her property will revert to her spouse. Is it correct? Yes. Renunciation of a bequest has the effect of rendering the testamentary disposition null and void (art. 1043 C. civ.). The devolution of inheritance then takes place as if this provision had never existed. Since your cousin has no…
See more
Our father passed away. He had remarried and we are 3 children from the first marriage. Our mother-in-law refuses to disclose the information she has on our father's bank accounts. Can the notary in charge of the succession identify them?

Notre père est décédé. Il était remarié et nous sommes 3 enfants du premier lit. Notre belle-mère refuse de communiquer les informations qu’elle détient sur les comptes bancaires de notre père. Le notaire en charge de la succession peut-il les identifier ? Yes. Indeed, law n° 2014-617 of June 13…
See more
My father owned and operated a farm. My brother participated in this activity without being paid but received the profits from the exploitation. Can he claim a deferred salary as part of our father's estate?

No. To be able to benefit from a deferred salary claim, the descendants of the deceased farmer must be over the age of 18 and participate directly and effectively in the operation. However, they must not have been associated with profits and losses, nor received salaries in cash (L.321-13 C…
See more
We have just inherited a house through joint possession with my brothers and sisters. Is it true that we have five years to share?

No. While the Civil Code provides that partition may be requested at any given time, it does not impose a maximum duration. The co-owners can even decide to conclude an agreement of joint ownership between them relating to the management of the joint goods. Its duration is limited to 5…
See more
My husband was retired. He passed away and left a huge debt. I plan to renounce his succession. Am I still entitled to the survivor's pension?

Yes. By renouncing the succession of your spouse, you lose the status of heir (article 805 of the Civil Code). On the other hand, you retain the status of spouse. However, the survivor's pension is a right reserved for the spouse or ex-spouse in the event of the death of…
See more
One of the co-heirs has accepted the succession but has not responded to reminders from the notary for several months. Can we still share?

Yes, but only under certain conditions. The defaulting co-owner, who is neither presumed absent nor unable to express his will due to removal, must then be given formal notice by extrajudicial act to be represented at the partition. The request must come from one of the co-sharers. If within three…
See more
I was the bare owner of a house, the usufructuary has just passed away. Does my notary have to take steps with the land registration service?

No. In the case mentioned, there is no legal obligation to advertise with the land advertisement service. The death of the usufructuary will simply be mentioned in the next deed of disposal subject to publication relating to this house (example: a sale), by the former bare owner who has become…
See more
I drew up a holograph will a long time ago and now I don't know what I've done with it. I've recently drawn up a new one. Does it automatically cancel the previous will?

No. If you do not specify in your last will and testament that it cancels any prior arrangements you may have made, these will be enforceable insofar as they do not conflict with your last will and testament.
See more
I have drawn up my will and filed it with the notary. I forgot to number the sheets and indicate the contact details of the notary. Is it still valid?

Yes. The conditions of validity of the holograph will are provided for in article 970 of the Civil Code: it must be written by the hand of the testator, dated, and signed. It specifies that it is not subject to any other form.
See more
Following the death of our parents, my brothers and I became joint owners of a property located in a condominium. The general meeting of co-owners is due to be held soon. Can each of us take part in the vote, given that we don't get along?

No. When a condominium is held by undivided co-owners, the indivision as a whole is represented by a joint agent chosen by the undivided co-owners. In the case of a disagreement, the representative is appointed by the president of the court to which the matter has been referred either by…
See more