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How Can I Obtain a Certificate of Inheritance in Germany?

Question from test1, How Can I Obtain a Certificate of Inheritance in Germany?

Answer from AI:

In Germany, a certificate of inheritance (Erbschein) is an official document that proves your legal status as an heir. It’s often required when dealing with banks, insurance companies, or when selling inherited property. Here’s a general guide on how to obtain one:

Step 1: Determine if You Need a Certificate of Inheritance

Not all situations require a certificate of inheritance. If the deceased left a will that was notarized in Germany, you might not need a certificate. However, if there’s any doubt about the legitimacy of the will or the identity of the heirs, you may need one.

Step 2: Gather Necessary Documents

You’ll need several documents to apply for a certificate of inheritance, including:

  • The deceased’s death certificate
  • The deceased’s will, if one exists
  • Proof of your relationship to the deceased, such as a birth or marriage certificate

Step 3: Apply at the Local Probate Court

In Germany, you apply for a certificate of inheritance at the local probate court (Nachlassgericht) where the deceased lived. You can do this in person or through a notary. The application must be either written in German or translated by a certified translator.

Step 4: Pay the Fee

There’s a fee for obtaining a certificate of inheritance, which varies depending on the value of the estate.

Step 5: Wait for the Certificate

Once you’ve applied and paid the fee, the court will review your application. This process can take several weeks or even months. If your application is approved, you’ll receive the certificate of inheritance.

Please note: This is a general guide and the process may vary depending on the specifics of your situation. It’s recommended to consult with a legal professional for personalized advice.

For more information, you can refer to the German Civil Code (Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch) which governs inheritance law in Germany.

Remember, obtaining a certificate of inheritance can be a complex process, especially if you’re not familiar with German law. If you’re unsure about anything, it’s always a good idea to seek legal advice.

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