The acceptance of inheritance

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The act through which the named heir exercises their right to inheritance of the assets of the deceased and therefore, inherits. It is an act defined by law as “one-sided and no evidence of receipt”, which means that its effects result from the will of one party (named, exactly) and there is no kind of lawful condition that may be placed by a third party acceptance on behalf of the named heir. The acceptance may be made only by those who have the right to inherit and not by others on their behalf. If the named party is unable to act (a minor or prohibited), as we shall see, there is a mandatory acceptance with benefit of inventory.

As we have already mentioned, the acceptance, if exercised, shall take effect retroactively from the moment the succession is opened at that moment the right to accept the inheritance and the right of the named party is also formed. The rights to accept have a time limitation: they shall expire ten years from the date of the opening of the succession. In case of an institution (conditional inheritance in the hands of an unborn child conceived or other), the terms start to run from the day when the condition occurs, i.e. from the birth of the named heir.

If the named party to inherit dies without having exercised his right, this is passed on to his heirs. The right of acceptance, in this case, is part of inheritance called (in turn open for acceptance). The death of the named party does not stop the prescribed terms of the acceptance of inheritance of the first deceased.

Deadline for inheritance. The Civil Code stipulates that anyone who has an interest in putting an end to a situation of uncertainty (typically a creditor of the deceased ) may request that the judicial authorities set a deadline within which the heir states whether they accept or renounce the inheritance. If the named heir does not make a statement within this period, they lose the right to accept and therefore lose the power to accept the inheritance. The named parties lose the power of acceptance even in the case where, when asked for the inventory of assets of the deceased, after 40 days of its closure do not proceed to acceptance.

Revocation and appeal. Once the acceptance made it is no longer possible to withdraw it. With the exception of two cases in which the heir can contest its validity:

● Violence or fraud. It is only possible for express acceptance. A case and, for example, when the named party is induced to accept a creditor of the deceased who threatens him physically, thereafter, may request that no account is taken of its acceptance.

● Subsequent discovery of a will. It is not possible to challenge the acceptance by mistake because of the express prohibition of Article 483 of the Civil Code. However, the same article provides for an exception in the event that a will is discovered after it has been accepted. In this case the heir is not required to satisfy what is written if it is more than the value of inheritance, or to the detriment of the legitimate portion that is due. For which the simple acceptance can be transformed into acceptance with the benefit of inventory.

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