French Wills

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Nigel Bright
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French Wills

Post by Nigel Bright » Tue 11 Jun 2019 20:44

After reading about the terrible problems surviving partners have, when their other half passes away and their French house is then in probate for years, with all the relatives squabbling over their share, my wife and I have decided to contact a notaire to have mirror wills written, so if I go first she will inherit 100% of our house, savings etc and vice versa.
We have no children of our own, but I have one son from a previous marriage who is 40 and lives in the US. Before we go to the notaire, I would like to check if anyone knows if we do have mirror wills written and I pass away first, then my wife would inherit 100% of our house, savings etc, but if she should at a later date sell the house, would my son have a right to a share of the proceeds?
Brighty

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Kate
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Re: French Wills

Post by Kate » Wed 12 Jun 2019 09:24

Advice from Lisa (Facebook)

If he dies first and leaves everything to his wife then he disinherits his son . When his wife dies everything would go to relatives on her side , the step son gets nothing

And as there are no children from their marriage it would go to parents, brothers, sisters, nephews,
Nieces and so on. With an enormous amount going to the tax man in succession fees.

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Kate
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Re: French Wills

Post by Kate » Wed 12 Jun 2019 11:29

and from Eleanor...

You can give somebody «jouissance» of the house- that means they don't actually inherit, but can live there freely until death (or whatever is stipulated in the will). That way, if husband dies first, wife will continue living in house until death, at which point the husband's son will inherit the house, or his part of the house. It's one way of dealing with this kind of situation which doesn't involve disinheriting anyone!

hariwallace
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Re: French Wills

Post by hariwallace » Wed 12 Jun 2019 14:30

I respectfully disagree with you. Under the Brussels IV convention, French residents are allowed to choose the law of their home country for succession. The poster can make a French will, register it with the notaire, and if he dies first, the property goes to his wife free and clear of any claim on behalf of her stepson. Also, if the property is held in tontine, it goes to the survivor free and clear. The only that doesn't go away is French inheritance tax. Please go to a notaire. They will set you straight.

alan
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Re: French Wills

Post by alan » Wed 12 Jun 2019 15:27

Yes, it is necessary to consider EU Succession Regulation (“Brussels IV”) first.

Fundamentally,

1) are you "habitually resident" in France and, if so, for how long?

2) are you British nationals?

Alan

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Kate
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Re: French Wills

Post by Kate » Wed 12 Jun 2019 18:14

From Mandy

If they are both not French Nationals they could avoid french succession law and make a will stating they want to go under their country of origin but they would still be liable to french inheritance tax, they could also if they want to go under french law and if they jointly own the property have a usufruit drawn up which would give the wife the right to use all of the husbands estate until she dies and then it would go to both sides of the family and no one is disinherited.

Florence
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Re: French Wills

Post by Florence » Wed 12 Jun 2019 18:36

You can speak to a notaire. You can have 1/2 free just for making enquiries.

martyn94
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Re: French Will

Post by martyn94 » Thu 13 Jun 2019 23:09

Florence wrote:
Wed 12 Jun 2019 18:36
You can speak to a notaire. You can have 1/2 free just for making enquiries.
I’m sure that that’s basically right. But I found my notaire less than
Nigel Bright wrote:
Tue 11 Jun 2019 20:44
After reading about the terrible problems surviving partners have, when their other half passes away and their French house is then in probate for years, with all the relatives squabbling over their share, my wife and I have decided to contact a notaire to have mirror wills written, so if I go first she will inherit 100% of our house, savings etc and vice versa.
We have no children of our own, but I have one son from a previous marriage who is 40 and lives in the US. Before we go to the notaire, I would like to check if anyone knows if we do have mirror wills written and I pass away first, then my wife would inherit 100% of our house, savings etc, but if she should at a later date sell the house, would my son have a right to a share of the proceeds?
I think that you are getting ahead of yourself. Mirror wills will generally not (I if I understand i

Nigel Bright
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Re: French Wills

Post by Nigel Bright » Mon 24 Jun 2019 13:46

Thanks to everyone for their input. We have now visited a notaire and our understanding of his verbal answer is as follows:
As we are UK passport holders, but are French residents and only have this property in France, who ever passes away first leaves the house, furniture, chattels, etc to their spouse.
However if the survivor, sold the house, my son would be entitled to part of the value of the house.
The only exception to this would be if the property is held in tontine, which it is not.
Brighty

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