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What is the procedure to accept an inheritance in Estonia ?

In Estonia, the acceptance of an inheritance involves a legal process that includes several steps. Here is a general overview of the procedure:

  1. Notification of Death:

If you become aware of the death, you should notify the local government registry office (Population Register) about the death. This can usually be done at the local municipality office where the deceased person was registered.

  2.Obtaining a Death Certificate:

A death certificate is usually issued by the Vital Statistics Office. You will need this document to proceed with the inheritance process.

  3.Finding the Will:

Check if the deceased person left a will. If there is a will, it should be submitted to the notary. If there is no will, the intestate succession rules will apply. (Here are instructions on How to write a will in Estonia )

  4.Appointing a Notary:

In Estonia, a notary plays a crucial role in the inheritance process. The notary can be chosen by the heirs or appointed by the court if necessary. Here is where you can book a notary 

5.Inventory of Assets and Liabilities:

The notary will help in preparing an inventory of the deceased person’s assets and liabilities. This involves identifying and valuing all the assets and debts of the estate.

6.Notification to Creditors:

The creditors of the deceased person must be notified. Creditors have a certain period to submit their claims.


 7.Decision on Acceptance or Renunciation:

Once the inventory and creditor notification processes are complete, the heirs need to make a decision on whether to accept or renounce the inheritance. If there are multiple heirs, they need to coordinate and make a joint decision.

   8.Inheritance Agreement:

If the heirs decide to accept the inheritance, an inheritance agreement is drawn up and signed. This agreement outlines the distribution of assets among the heirs.


9.Distribution of Assets:

After the inheritance agreement is signed, the notary will assist in transferring the assets to the respective heirs according to the agreed-upon terms.


10.Payment of Inheritance Tax:

Estonia does not levy an inheritance tax on property received through inheritance within the country. However, it’s essential to be aware that tax laws can change, and it’s advisable to check for any updates or amendments to the tax regulations.

11.Finalizing the Process:

The notary will issue a certificate of succession, confirming the completion of the inheritance process.

It’s important to note that this is a general overview, and the specific details and requirements may vary depending on the circumstances  It is advisable to consult with a local notary or legal professional to ensure compliance with current regulations and to receive personalized guidance based on the specific situation.

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