Calculating Legitimate Portion: Protecting Inheritance Rights

Calculating Legitimate Portion Protecting Inheritance Rights

In the realm of inheritance law, the “legitimate portion” constitutes the share of the deceased’s estate reserved by law for their closest family, known as “legitimate heirs“. When a legitimate heir suspects that their rightful share has been compromised by testamentary dispositions or lifetime gifts from the deceased (de cuius), it becomes crucial to calculate the overall value of the deceased’s estate.

This article addresses this delicate issue, explaining how to determine the legitimate portion’s value and, consequently, establish if the alleged injury to the legitimate heir exists. The initiation of the corresponding civil action, known as the “action for injury,” is contingent upon this assessment.

Key Points:

  1. Identifying Legitimate Heirs:
    Legitimate heirs include the spouse or partner in a civil union, descendants, and, in the absence of descendants, ascendants. These individuals are entitled to a portion of the deceased’s estate, irrespective of testamentary provisions.
  2. Consequences of Legitimate Injury:
    If a legitimate heir observes that their legitimate share is less than what the law allocates, they can bring a civil action within ten years of the succession’s opening (i.e., the de cuius’s death). The “action for reduction due to injury to the legitimate portion” aims to restore the heir’s lawful share.
  3. Calculating the Legitimate Portion’s Value:
    The legitimate heir’s claim relies on calculating the value of the legitimate portion. This involves assessing the deceased’s entire estate, factoring in testamentary dispositions and lifetime gifts, to determine if the lawful share has been infringed.
  4. Criteria for Division in Communion:
    The division of the inherited estate among legitimate heirs adheres to specific criteria, ensuring a fair distribution.
  5. Cassation Court’s Perspective:
    The Cassation Court has addressed issues related to the calculation of the legitimate portion, providing legal insights on the matter.

Understanding the nuances of calculating the legitimate portion is crucial for legitimate heirs seeking to protect their inheritance rights. This process involves a meticulous evaluation of the deceased’s estate, testamentary actions, and lifetime gifts to ensure compliance with legal provisions.

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