Q. May I refuse to inherit an Italian property?
A. It is possible to relinquish Italian inheritance rights by means of a statement to be filed with the Italian Court or a notary. If you do it in Court the inheritance renunciation statement is subject to stamp duty and registration taxes for a total of approximately EUR 250. If you do it through a notary, also notary fees will apply, ranging approximately between EUR 500 and EUR 700. You can file an inheritance right renunciation statement or a representative can file the statement above on your behalf by means of a Power of Attorney. If you do it by means of a Power of Attorney (PoA), there will be also PoA costs.
It is important to take into consideration also as follows:
i) it is not possible to renounce to inherit a specific asset only: you can only relinquish your title as an heir with respect to the entire estate (although in certain cases it is possible to limit the renunciation effects to one or a limited number of assets);
ii) it is not possible to decide who shall be heir on your behalf: if you wish to do so, you need to claim inheritance first and then transfer the inherited assets to the desired beneficiary;
iii) Once you renounce to enforce your Italian inheritance right, the right to inherit automatically goes to the alternative beneficiary established in the will (if there is a will and if said replacement is mentioned), or to your descendants, if any. If there is no alternative beneficiary by will nor your descendants, the right goes to the next of kin as per the Italian intestate Succession Law.
A typical case when it is beneficial or effective for a subject to relinquish Italian inheritance right is when the heir is a survived spouse who wishes to leave the estate to all children in equal shares. Another case when Italian inheritance renunciation might be recommended is when the deceased left substantial debts, exceeding the value of assets included in the left estate.
Our law firm has an extensive experience reviewing international succession circumstances and transitioning Italian estates through generations in an effective manner. We offer legal assistance to file inheritance claims or inheritance renunciation statements with respect to Italian estate, including real estate rights and financial assets.
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