The law and practice referred to in this article or webinar has been paraphrased or summarised. It might not be up-to-date with changes in the law and we do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided at the time of reading. It should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice in relation to a specific set of circumstances.
The lawyers in Stone King’s International and Cross-Broder Team are trained to help individuals with their estate planning, covering their assets located throughout the world, including those in Greece.
Marina Emmanouel, a solicitor in the team is a native Greek speaker bringing an additional level of expertise to help our Greek/UK clients.
If a family member or friend passes away owning assets in Greece, Stone King can help with their estate administration. In addition to our normal UK estate administration services and applying for a UK grant of probate, we can also assist by:
- Appointing a Greek lawyer familiar to working internationally to carry out the work which must be undertaken in Greece. We will work with this Greek lawyer to analyse what work needs to be completed in each jurisdiction.
- Project managing the UK and Greek estate administrations, so that our clients only need a single point of contact.
- Obtaining an official copy of the death certificate (Ληξιαρχική πράξη θανάτου) if the deceased died in Greece. If a UK death certificate has been issued we can arrange for it to be apostilled so that it can be used in Greece.
- Providing the Greek lawyers with an apostilled and translated copy of the Will (if the Will is a non-Greek one).
- Assessing whether English/Welsh succession law or Greek succession law applies to which assets.
- Calculating the UK inheritance tax and ascertaining whether the deceased was domiciled in the UK for tax purposes (and therefore UK inheritance tax must be assessed on the deceased’s UK and Greek assets) or whether only their UK assets need to be assessed. We complete and submit the UK inheritance tax as necessary.
- Co-ordinating the payment of UK and Greek taxes to mitigate the consequences double taxation, if required.
- If the Greek lawyers require a notarised power of attorney in order to submit the necessary probate paperwork in Greece, we can assist the beneficiaries with the signing of this document and its notarisation.
- In Greece where the deceased owned real property a notarial deed confirming the beneficiary acceptance must be drawn up (συμβολαιογραφική πράξη αποδοχής κληρονομίας ή κληρονομητήριο). We can explain this to our clients and assist with the execution and submission to the Greek competent authority (υποθηκοφυλακείο ή κτηματολόγιο).
- Liaising with our Greek accountant contacts to obtain an AFM Greek tax code (Απόδοση Αριθμού Φορολογικού Μητρώου (ΑΦΜ)) which is vital for accepting an inheritance in Greece.
- Providing advice in relation to accepting or disclaiming a Greek inheritance, namely (κατάθεση δήλωσης αποδοχής (εκ διαθήκης, εξ αδιαθέτου ή αναγκαίο κληρονόμο) ή αποποίησης κληρονομίας). There is a one year limit in Greece for disclaiming your inheritance if the individual is domiciled abroad. If they were domiciled in Greece, then there is a four month limit.
- Advising upon and preparing deeds of variation, for the purposes of post death tax planning from a UK perspective.
- Ensuring the UK and Greek assets are distributed to the correct beneficiaries.
- We can also provide administrative help such as arranging the funeral, repatriating a body, and selling property.
If you own property in Greece and are resident in the UK, or you live in Greece but own property in the UK and need help with your estate planning please do get in touch.
We have an experienced and highly qualified team that can help you put Wills in place. We can also liaise with Greek accountants and financial advisors if you wish.
In order to advise you properly we will analyse your circumstances and provide an in-depth report, before drafting Wills that will be customised to your individual situation. Our advice will include:
- Analysing your domicile, including common-law and civil law definitions for succession and taxation purposes.
- Reviewing whether you have entered into a matrimonial property regime that will affect how you can leave your assets on death.
- Advising on the Greek forced heirship rules, such as the right to compulsory shares (νόμιμη μοίρα) and Anglo-Welsh testamentary freedom.
- Advising on the EU Succession Regulation 650/2012, also known as ‘Brussels IV’ (Κανονισμός (ΕΕ) αριθμός 650/2012 του Ευρωπαϊκού Κοινοβουλίου και του Συμβουλίου).
- Providing you detailed advice in relation to UK inheritance tax allowances and exemptions (estate planning opportunities).
- Discussing the Greek tax implications of your estate planning.