Unlocking the Mystery of Inheritance in Italy: How to Determine Your Share of an Estate

Unlocking the Mystery of Inheritance in Italy How to Determine Your Share of an Estate

Discovering whether you’re the beneficiary of an inheritance can be a labyrinthine journey, especially if you’re in the dark about a deceased relative’s demise or their testamentary intentions. In Italy, the process of inheritance typically revolves around the transfer of assets either as outlined in a will or, in its absence, through distribution among legal heirs as stipulated by law. Usually, prospective inheritors are swiftly informed of a family member’s passing. However, circumstances such as estrangement or distant relationships may delay this revelation.

Initially, it’s pivotal to ascertain the existence of a will. This can be achieved by reaching out to the local Notary Archive where the deceased resided or by accessing the General Register of Wills in Rome if the relevant notary falls under a different jurisdiction. It’s imperative to understand that all wills, regardless of their form, including handwritten ones retained at home, must be officially registered by a notary. According to Article 620 of the Civil Code, anyone in possession of a will must promptly submit it to a notary for registration upon learning of the testator’s death.

Once registered, the notary proceeds with the publication of the will in the presence of two witnesses, meticulously documenting its contents and the act of opening it. This procedure, termed “publication,” is conducted as a notarial act, which is then archived and stored at the notary’s office until their retirement or cessation of activity. Additionally, this publication is duly recorded in the aforementioned General Register of Wills.

Effectively, if the deceased left a will, discovering whether you’re an heir is a matter of simply requesting information from the Notary Archive or the General Register of Wills to obtain this vital information. However, in the eventuality of no will being found, the process becomes more intricate. In such cases, the law steps in to identify the so-called “successors,” individuals entitled to inherit the deceased’s assets in a hierarchical manner, ranging from close family members like spouses and children to distant relatives up to the sixth degree, with the state being the final inheritor in the absence of any eligible relatives.

In conclusion, uncovering your inheritance status in Italy involves a meticulous exploration of legal procedures and archives, ensuring that you navigate the complex terrain of estate distribution with clarity and understanding.

VGSLawyers is a law firm specialised in Inheritance matters under Italian Law, in case you need assistance feel free to contact

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