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Old 25.05.2012, 21:41
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Executors for Swiss will

Does anyone know if Swiss solicitors or banks can act as executors for a Swiss will? Hubby and I need to organise our wills as we're both getting on a bit and don't have any yet. The problem is all the relatives are in UK or US and I don't really want to put the burden on them to sort out a will/s in a foreign country where they don't speak the language. We've had enough difficulty doing it the other way around for my late father-in-law's UK will and that's without the added language difficulty. Also they're no younger than we are, so I wondered if it was possible under Swiss law to have a solicitor or bank act as executors.
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Old 25.05.2012, 22:03
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Re: Executors for Swiss will

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Does anyone know if Swiss solicitors or banks can act as executors for a Swiss will? Hubby and I need to organise our wills as we're both getting on a bit and don't have any yet. The problem is all the relatives are in UK or US and I don't really want to put the burden on them to sort out a will/s in a foreign country where they don't speak the language. We've had enough difficulty doing it the other way around for my late father-in-law's UK will and that's without the added language difficulty. Also they're no younger than we are, so I wondered if it was possible under Swiss law to have a solicitor or bank act as executors.
You can simplify matters by giving a power of atorney on any bank accounts that don't end on death, the person who is given the POA does not even have to know & can give his signature to the bank after your death. Of course in the UK / US a POA end on death.
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Old 25.05.2012, 23:48
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Re: Executors for Swiss will

There is a first step you should consider before the will, especially if you have children. Swiss law sets who gets what, there are ways and contracts to get around this, basically if either of you die 50% automatically goes to your children. Depending on your circumstances this can create a world of difficulties eg you may then need to pay you children out before you can "reown" your own house again. This is especially problematic if the children are under 18 years and can not sign this right away. We did our through the local notary and he explained all the options, depending on your canton this can be a cheap or dear option. You can also state that you wish your will to be interpreted under the laws of your home country, it depends how long you have been here and your permit status. But there is a lot more to it than just executors to think about.
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Old 25.05.2012, 23:51
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Re: Executors for Swiss will

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There is a first step you should consider before the will, especially if you have children. Swiss law sets who gets what, there are ways and contracts to get around this, basically if either of you die 50% automatically goes to your children.
Actually, it's 37.5% (and equal to your spouse), the other 25% is free.

If no will, then 50/50.

Tom
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Old 26.05.2012, 00:02
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Re: Executors for Swiss will

We have made a successorial pact so that the remaining spouse gets 100% of our assets - then when the last one goes, our children will inherit in equal parts. If you don't, then the remaining spouse will possibly have to sell the house to give the children their part. Be very careful on this one and get proper advice, please.
I love my (adult) children dearly - but I do not want to be forced to sell the house (or vice-versa if I go first).
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Old 26.05.2012, 00:09
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Re: Executors for Swiss will

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We have made a successorial pact so that the remaining spouse gets 100% of our assets - then when the last one goes, our children will inherit in equal parts.
But the children MUST agree to this, no way to do it otherwise (if you are Swiss).

Tom
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Old 26.05.2012, 10:09
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Re: Executors for Swiss will

No, no children involved, just the two of us. Otherwise the closest relatives are all cousins. As we're all of a similar age or older it would be easier if a solicitor or bank here could act as executor because of the language difference and we may end up being the last of the generation to go anyway. I don't really want to put the onus on their kids to deal with things as we don't really know them.

I know Swiss inheritance is different from UK, but until we can sort out the best way to have someone as executor I can't see a lot of point in going to the solicitor to see what options we have before drawing up our wills. Initially, of course, we will be executors for each other, but it's what will happen when we're both gone that I'm concerned about sorting out.
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