Inheritance settlement

The purpose of inheritance settlement is to dissolve the community of heirs by division.

What is a community of heirs?

If the estate goes to several persons, a community of heirs is created.

The co-heirs jointly dispose of and administer the estate until it is divided. If the co-heirs wish to divide the inheritance, this is referred to as a “settlement”, regardless of whether the participants agree peacefully or argue.

What are the options?

The simplest option is to agree on an overall solution by mutual consent, which is achieved by means of an inheritance settlement agreement.

This is signed by all co-heirs and then forms the basis for the distribution of money and objects.

The contract must be notarised if the estate includes real estate.

As soon as each co-heir has received his or her share of the inheritance, the division of the estate is complete.

Co-heirs who wish to receive their share of the inheritance can immediately sell their share of the inheritance.

The consent of the co-heirs is not required, but they have a two-month pre-sale right.

Partitioning & accrual of the inheritance shares

Another possibility is the "partitioning" and "accrual" of the inheritance shares.

In the former, a co-heir renounces his or her share of the inheritance in return for payment of a settlement by the other heirs. The consequence is the “accrual” of the first inheritance shares.

The amount of the settlement is a matter of negotiation and does not necessarily have to correspond to the amount of the inheritance share.

Action for partition of inheritance

As a last alternative, an action for partition of the estate is the most protracted and cost-intensive way of enforcing a partition plan for the entire estate against the resistance of one or more co-heirs.

The requirements for such an action are manifold and in some cases impossible to fulfil.

Indivisible items, such as real estate, must be converted into a divisible sum of money by partition auction. The family home often has to be sold.

Lawsuits for the division of inheritance are to be avoided, as they always involve high costs and high risks. The plaintiffs have to reckon with considerable lawyer’s fees and court costs. Often there are additional costs caused by expert reports. Likewise, the proceedings usually take several years.

Community of heirs?

Your inheritance settlement with Kutter Law

Our team will sit down with you and discuss all the options. We examine which option is most favourable for you and best suits your interests. We are also happy to advise the community of heirs as a whole in order to deal with your matter transparently with all parties and to avoid disputes.

Anwältin für Erbrecht Katharina Kutter
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