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Frequently asked questions – Italian inheritance law

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  • Frequently asked questions – Italian inheritance law

    I am a foreign (non Italian) citizen and I own a property in Italy. What inheritance law will apply to my Italian property?
    If you own a property in Italy the applicable inheritance law will always be the Italian one independently from your nationality. This principle is defined as “lex rei sitae”, the law where the property is located.

    With my Will is it possible to dispose only of some of my assets?
    YES; the assets mentioned in the Will will be inherited by the heirs mentioned in the Will. The remaining Italian assets will go to the forced heirs.

    Having direct relatives (ascendents and/or descendents) may I destinate part of my asset to an institution?
    YES; independently from your family situation you can always destinate a part of your inheritance (the diposable one) to other parties or institutions (e.g. charity).

    For married partners is it legal drafting a joint Will?
    NO, WILLS ARE STRICTLY PERSONAL DEEDS. Each partner must draft an individual Will.

    Are there any relatives who cannot be excluded in the Succession?
    YES; relatives in direct line are entitled to a reserved quota:
    Children or nephew/niece;
    Parents (in absence of children)
    married partner

    What happens if a will violates the rights of the forced heirs?
    The forced heirs may accept the Will or alternatively challenge it.

    What are the rights of the married partner, the separated partner and the divorced partner?
    Married partner and separated partner have exactly the same rights.
    With the divorce all rights terminate.

    Is it possible nominating more beneficiaries in the same Will?
    YES; it is possible to nominate more beneficiaries, each one of them pro-quota (heir A 1/3, heir B 1/3, heir C 1/3) or different beneficiaries for each single asset (my beach house to heir A, my city house to heir B).

    Is it possible changing my Will throughout time?
    YES; it is always permitted changing or amending or revoking the WILL.

    Who should I contact should I decide to draft an Italian Will?
    You should contact a bilingual Italian lawyer or a bilingual Notary public.

    What should I do with my Will?
    You should put it under the custody of a person you trust.

    Avv. Giandomenico De Tullio