Your Italian Lawyers

Inheritance Claim Procedures

At Studio Legale Stornelli, we help clients from all over the world get through Italian inheritance claim and probate procedures.

Starting from the preliminary due diligence — taking into consideration the possible presence of a will, its contents, its applicability to a specific case, and all available information about possible heirs and assets — we help searching for and determine which individuals are entitled to inherit, the specifics of the estate (i.e., assets, rights, and obligations), and the laws applicable to specific assets.

In order to comply with fiscal duties related to the inheritance, the heirs are required to calculate and pay estate and property transfer taxes, and file a Dichiarazione di Successione (Statement of Succession) with proof of taxes paid with the Italian tax authority, the Agenzia delle Entrate, within 12 months of the death.

In reference to inheriting real estate, the person who files the Dichiarazione di Successione must, within 30 days of such filing, request the voltura (update) of the Italian Catasto (Land Registry) public record in the name of the new owner or owners.

Although the law requires the above activities, they do not suffice to accept an inheritance.

Acceptance of an inheritance can be express or tacit.

  •  Express acceptance of an inheritance occurs when an heir makes a formal statement before a notary or a court’s registrar, in the form of a public instrument or authenticated signature.
  •  Tacit acceptance of an inheritance occurs when the heir acts as owner (e.g., selling or donating the property), despite having made no formal statement.

We can help with all issues related to Italian inheritance and real estate transactions, including but not limited to inheritance claim procedures, and legal assistance with property sales and property management (bill and tax payments, setting up and closing utilities accounts, and forwarding mail).

Based on our familiarity with international document validation procedures and thanks to our large network of professional associates throughout the country, we can deal with Italian real estate and inheritance matters successfully, without our clients needing to travel to Italy.

Contact us for additional information.

Our office can also mediate with credit institutions and other involved parties in cases where our clients inherit bank accounts or other assets. We can coordinate fund transfers and distributions, and help find cost-effective solutions for exchanging currencies. If need be, we can also provide escrow account service.

Our services also include, for example:

  • Probate process based on an Italian or foreign will
  • Processing testate and intestate succession claims
  • Preliminary assets research (e.g., wills left in Italy, Italian real estate and rights on properties, bank accounts, life insurance awards and other kinds of possible relationships between the deceased person and credit institutions, insurance companies and social security institutions)
  • Identifying the inheritance law applicable to a specific case
  • Advising on the distribution of inheritance assets among rightful beneficiaries
  • Determining the individuals entitled to receive a specific inheritance
  • National will search
  • Determining if a will is compliant with the law or violates the minimum shares granted to the deceased’s close familiars protected by Italian law
  • Advising how to relinquish inheritance rights
  • Calculating and paying inheritance taxes
  • International estate planning
  • Drafting an Italian or foreign will
  • Reviewing and updating existing Italian and foreign wills;
  • Analyzing retrieved wills and advising in regard to their applicability, compliance with law, consequences, and if they are subject to revoke or be revoked by other wills;
  • International validation of Italian wills and any other kinds of documents (e.g., certificates) to be used abroad and foreign wills to be used in Italy;
  • Managing, on behalf of the beneficiaries, the liquidation of the inheritance estate (e.g., properties, invested funds, etc.) or single shares of the assets;
  • Managing inherited assets;
  • Real estate due diligence, aimed to determine – before filing a succession – if properties are encumbered by debts, liens, easements or other kinds of burden.
  • Updating public records in the name of the heirs;
  • Terminating joint ownerships on inherited assets;
  • Transferring inheritance funds and goods abroad;
  • Legal assistance throughout litigation, arbitration and mediation processes in the matter of Italian succession.