International Inheritance Laws

 

Flag of Greece

Danny Meneses

Throughout this paper I will be answering the following 3 questions; 1. May inhabitants of your country make wills? If so, what is the age of the testamentary capacity in your country? 2. Must testators hire an attorney to make a will in your country? Can you find the website of an estates, trusts and wills (aka “probate”) attorney practicing in your country? Describe it and provide a working link, 3. What are the intestacy laws of your country? How do they differ from the New York laws?

 

1. According to Greek law, a person who is over the age of 18 and of sound and mind has the right and ability to make a Will in Greece to secure the transfer of their assets. Greece has a system of forced heir ship, and a person may not freely determine who gets what. If a person dies without making a will, all assets will be divided. Any Will that involves a property located in Greece has to follow Greek law, regardless of whether the testator is Greek or not and whether they lived in Greece or not. These are the 3 types of wills in Greece Holographic Will, Mystic (secret) Will, Public Will. They are very similar not only by name but by meaning as well to the New York State laws.

 

2. Testators do not need to hire an attorney from Greece in other to execute a Will in Greece, wherever a Will is made then that is where it must be probated. All Wills in order to be valid in the law must be done by a licensed lawyer no matter where they reside, and have a minimum of two witnesses. When a testator wants to make a Will they do not need to hire an attorney specifically from Greece to validate the Will, as long as the person is a licensed attorney, and is able to legally draft a Will then the Will is valid in the laws of Greece. As long as the person whom is having their Will executed is able to provide citizenship information, passports etc then would suffice. The Will must be done in a well-organized manner following all the prerequisites to the Will, if done well then the Will shall be valid. In addition, the will must be executed following the laws of Greece. “Wills are made whenever a testator wishes arrangements other than those envisaged by intestate succession. There is no need for a foreigner to make a local will, yet a foreigner may choose to make his/her will while in Greece (which is neither advisable nor practical if the testator does not intend to continue living in Greece). Greek law provides for three types of ordinary wills, i.e. the holographic, the public, and the secret.”

http://www.globalpropertyguide.com/Europe/Greece/Inheritance (near bottom where it says, “There is no need for a foreigner to make a Greek will”

 

3. When it comes to the laws of intestacy from Greece, the laws of Greece follow the same guidelines when it comes to passing down money or property to those in your family. The guidelines that were slightly different from New York State Laws that I saw are when the surviving spouse is able to get a 1/4th of the estate that is divided into equal parts with the children. Whether it’s a divorce, or one has died, adopted, the laws from Greece follow the same guidelines as the laws in New York do. When it comes to the validity of the will depending if the person died intestate or not then the will can be valid.

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