Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Help & tips > Finance/banking/taxation
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 30.08.2011, 22:39
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Neuchatel
Posts: 20,672
Groaned at 428 Times in 323 Posts
Thanked 23,646 Times in 10,712 Posts
Odile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond repute
Inheritance laws in CH

When we came here from the UK and bought our house (me dual Swiss/Brit OH Brit but since then dual Swiss/Brit) we were advised by our solicitor here to make a 'acte successoral' or 'inheritance contract'. No idea about the German or Italian term.

This had to be drawn up by our solicitor and signed by both of us with 2 official witnesses. This now ensures that all our assets, including our house here and flat in the UK - will be inherited in full by the surviving spouse. Normally under Swiss Law children share 50% of the assets equally- unless this 'official pact' is done. Elsewhere on the Forum, this has been challenged as impossible, so starting new thread in order to highjack another. I shall phone our solicitor to make absolutely sure. In the meantime, does anybody here have any experience or professional of this. Thanks.
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank Odile for this useful post:
  #2  
Old 30.08.2011, 22:47
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 20,895
Groaned at 1,090 Times in 857 Posts
Thanked 23,477 Times in 11,216 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Well, as you are both duals, I would expect the Swiss to treat you both as "Swiss", which was the case when my wife died (she, CH/CD, me CH/US), and Swiss rules would apply.

Meanwhile, we are dealing with the situation of my girlfriend's sister (who is Swiss) and is married to a (xxxxx, I'd rather not specify) who she wishes to divorce (marriage of convenience, 15 years ago, never consumated), but can't be located! Seems he is hoping she will die before the divorce (really, not making this up!), so that he can inherit!

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 30.08.2011, 22:51
fatmanfilms's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Verbier
Posts: 15,181
Groaned at 230 Times in 202 Posts
Thanked 12,544 Times in 7,052 Posts
fatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond reputefatmanfilms has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
When we came here from the UK and bought our house (me dual Swiss/Brit OH Brit but since then dual Swiss/Brit) we were advised by our solicitor here to make a 'acte successoral' or 'inheritance contract'. No idea about the German or Italian term.

This had to be drawn up by our solicitor and signed by both of us with 2 official witnesses. This now ensures that all our assets, including our house here and flat in the UK - will be inherited in full by the surviving spouse. Normally under Swiss Law children share 50% of the assets equally- unless this 'official pact' is done. Elsewhere on the Forum, this has been challenged as impossible. I shall phone our solicitor to make absolutely sure. In the meantime, does anybody here have any experience or professional of this. Thanks.
The info I gave on the other thread about the property in CH was in Verbier VS. It's a non working B holder who has not (yet) left the UK as far as the UK revenue are concerned.

The restriction only applied to the house not bank accounts etc in CH.
There was no way to exclude the children, taking out a huge mortgage fixed the 'problem'

Different canton, I am sure your solicitor will know the exact situation in your case.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 30.08.2011, 22:54
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Neuchatel
Posts: 20,672
Groaned at 428 Times in 323 Posts
Thanked 23,646 Times in 10,712 Posts
Odile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Swiss rules would apply UNLESS we have had a proper 'pacte successoral' drawn up professionally, signed by both of us and properly witnessed. This is what was clearly explained to us- and that, having done so- all 100% of all inheritance will go to surviving spouse. WITHOUT such a pact/contract, normal 50/50% would apply. Neither of us can change that 'pact' without the approval of the other- and this can only be done by a solicitor, signed by both parties and properly witnessed.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Odile for this useful post:
  #5  
Old 30.08.2011, 22:56
miniMia's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: romandie
Posts: 9,415
Groaned at 95 Times in 86 Posts
Thanked 8,163 Times in 4,087 Posts
miniMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond reputeminiMia has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

My BIL wrote out a will and in it he requested that his mother voluntarily give up her rights. They had no children. Thankfully he out lived his mother. But this might an option to look into as well.

As for the succession to the surviving spouse, I think this only delays the regular inheritance rules until the surviving spouse passes. Is that not so in your case, Odile?
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 30.08.2011, 22:58
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 20,895
Groaned at 1,090 Times in 857 Posts
Thanked 23,477 Times in 11,216 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
Swiss rules would apply UNLESS we have had a proper 'pacte successoral' drawn up professionally, signed by both of us and properly witnessed. This is what was clearly explained to us- and that, having done so- all 100% of all inheritance will go to surviving spouse. WITHOUT such a pact/contract, normal 50/50% would apply.
Do you have some references for this?

If anything, my fiancee and I would like to do the opposite, i.e. that the part of each goes to the children of each.

Thanks,

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:01
Mica's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Zurich
Posts: 638
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 790 Times in 347 Posts
Mica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

The answer is not quite clear cut, since OP and OH are dual citizens.

Check this:
http://www.admin.ch/ch/d/sr/291/a90.html
and this:
http://www.admin.ch/ch/d/sr/291/a95.html
and check with an inheritance lawyer. PM me for suggestions.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Mica for this useful post:
  #8  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:04
tom tulpe's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Horgen
Posts: 1,192
Groaned at 23 Times in 20 Posts
Thanked 1,409 Times in 646 Posts
tom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
Swiss rules would apply UNLESS we have had a proper 'pacte successoral' drawn up professionally, signed by both of us and properly witnessed. This is what was clearly explained to us- and that, having done so- all 100% of all inheritance will go to surviving spouse. WITHOUT such a pact/contract, normal 50/50% would apply. Neither of us can change that 'pact' without the approval of the other- and this can only be done by a solicitor, signed by both parties and properly witnessed.
Again, please do speak to a notaire (if you're in Jura, the pacte successoral should have be signed before a notary). Your problem is Art. 90 of the Federal International Private Law Act whereby
Quote:
La succession d’une personne qui avait son dernier domicile en Suisse est régie par le droit suisse. Un étranger peut toutefois soumettre sa succession par testament ou pacte successoral au droit de l’un de ses Etats nationaux. Ce choix est caduc si, au moment de son décès, le disposant n’avait plus cette nationalité ou avait acquis la nationalité suisse.
i.e. if you are Swiss and live in Switzerland, you cannot opt out

Last edited by tom tulpe; 30.08.2011 at 23:13. Reason: Art. 90, not 91 as per the original post (thanks Mica)
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank tom tulpe for this useful post:
  #9  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:04
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Neuchatel
Posts: 20,672
Groaned at 428 Times in 323 Posts
Thanked 23,646 Times in 10,712 Posts
Odile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

MiniMia, of course- When surviving spouse dies, our children will inherit in equal parts. But that mean that said surviving spouse does not have to sell house and move to give children 50% of assets.

Plenty of advice re 'successoral pact' on Internet/Google- however not sure what the term is in German or Italian. But your solicitor should know all about it. Not sure if being married or not makes a difference (CH being a bit (!) old-fashioned on that front.

Tom, according to our solicitor, we cannot avoid Swiss inheritance laws as we are now both Swiss and our papers and taxes are here in CH. However, a Pacte Successoral is fully legal in CH, providing it is drawn up properly and in due form by a solicitor in CH, signed by both and witnessed. This way we can ensure all 100% go to surviving spouse. This is not opting out of Swiss inheritance laws, it is legally and properly changing the 'normal' form of inheritance.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Odile for this useful post:
  #10  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:08
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 20,895
Groaned at 1,090 Times in 857 Posts
Thanked 23,477 Times in 11,216 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
if you are Swiss and live in Switzerland, you cannot opt out
Thanks, this is exactly what I have learned as well.

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:10
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 20,895
Groaned at 1,090 Times in 857 Posts
Thanked 23,477 Times in 11,216 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
a Pacte Successoral is fully legal in CH, providing it is drawn up properly and in due form by a solicitor in CH, signed by both and witnessed. This way we can ensure all 100% go to surviving spouse.
Thanks, I will have to check into this. But as I said, would would like to do the contrary (our own kids get out own stuff).

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:15
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Neuchatel
Posts: 20,672
Groaned at 428 Times in 323 Posts
Thanked 23,646 Times in 10,712 Posts
Odile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond reputeOdile has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

My understanding of this inheritance contract seems to indicate that should be possible Tom - but only a good solicitor can advise. In any case, both of you would have to agree- and once contract drawn up, neither party can change it without the other's consent - so can be unwise in some cases. For instance if I left my OH and had a new relationship - my OH would still inherit 100% and there would be nothing I could do about it. As we've been together for 41 years, this will hopefully not happen, or vice versa
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:20
Mica's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Zurich
Posts: 638
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 790 Times in 347 Posts
Mica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
Thanks, I will have to check into this. But as I said, would would like to do the contrary (our own kids get out own stuff).

Tom
For the sake of clarification, you each have your "own" children (i.e. not related/adopted by the other), and you are not "planning" on having "common" children...

With appropriate drafting of the wills (or inheritance contract) you can either favor your OH or your children (albeit within limits of the mandatory inheritance portions).
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:21
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 20,895
Groaned at 1,090 Times in 857 Posts
Thanked 23,477 Times in 11,216 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Our concern is more that, unless we adopt each other's kids, the kids of the surviving spouse get more than than the kids of the non-surviving spouse.

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:22
Mica's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Zurich
Posts: 638
Groaned at 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanked 790 Times in 347 Posts
Mica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond reputeMica has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
My understanding of this inheritance contract seems to indicate that should be possible Tom - but only a good solicitor can advise. In any case, both of you would have to agree- and once contract drawn up, neither party can change it without the other's consent - so can be unwise in some cases. For instance if I left my OH and had a new relationship - my OH would still inherit 100% and there would be nothing I could do about it. As we've been together for 41 years, this will hopefully not happen, or vice versa
You can also regulate matters by each partner making a will (but these can later be changed unilaterally)...
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:23
st2lemans's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Lugano
Posts: 20,895
Groaned at 1,090 Times in 857 Posts
Thanked 23,477 Times in 11,216 Posts
st2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond reputest2lemans has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
For the sake of clarification, you each have your "own" children (i.e. not related/adopted by the other), and you are not "planning" on having "common" children...

With appropriate drafting of the wills (or inheritance contract) you can either favor your OH or your children (albeit within limits of the mandatory inheritance portions).
Yes, but you cannot equalise it, i.e. 1/4 is up for grabs, the rest follows the rules.

Tom
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:24
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Zürich, Zumikon
Posts: 130
Groaned at 2 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 87 Times in 52 Posts
Canariesfan is considered knowledgeableCanariesfan is considered knowledgeableCanariesfan is considered knowledgeable
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

This sounds very familiar but with a slight twist to the advice we were given in the past two weeks. We were told living in Zurich and our circumstances it was best to have a "marriage contract" drawn up rather than an inheritance contract and in it explain the assets that were built up over the period of the marriage , which in our case was most of what we own, could be given over to the surviving spouse rather than split 50/50 with spouse/children, which would naturally happen without such a contract. As stated this contract has to be drawn up and signed in front of the notary. This was a bit of an eye opener to us having been here 3 years. This clearly avoids any risk of children deciding that a round the world snowboarding trip is a much better investment than a roof over an ageing parent's head

we were also then clearly advised that to create a will we just have to hand write an expression of wishes, as on the death of the second partner the wealth would naturally flow to our children. The children it seems are expected to carry out such wishes but could feasibly choose to not enact them. To make it legally enforceable another "inheritance contract" needed to be set up. All in all it quite logical. Currently waiting to sign said marriage contract and no doubt receive eye watering pink slip in the post.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:25
tom tulpe's Avatar
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Horgen
Posts: 1,192
Groaned at 23 Times in 20 Posts
Thanked 1,409 Times in 646 Posts
tom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond reputetom tulpe has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

The pacte successoral is one of the options under Swiss law to determine what should happen after one's death (mode de disposer). It does not alter the reserved quotas, hence Art. 481 Code Civil:
Quote:
Les dispositions par testament ou pacte successoral peuvent comprendre tout ou partie du patrimoine, dans les limites de la quotité disponible.
So unless your children have renounced their heritage (which they can do if they - the children - sign a pacte successoral, Art. 495 Code civil), the pacte successoral in itself is of no use against the rights of dependents and/or spouses (and parents!) under Swiss inheritance law.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank tom tulpe for this useful post:
  #19  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:29
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Zurich
Posts: 196
Groaned at 4 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 224 Times in 102 Posts
Calvin has earned the respect of manyCalvin has earned the respect of manyCalvin has earned the respect of many
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

Quote:
View Post
When we came here from the UK and bought our house (me dual Swiss/Brit OH Brit but since then dual Swiss/Brit) we were advised by our solicitor here to make a 'acte successoral' or 'inheritance contract'. No idea about the German or Italian term.

This had to be drawn up by our solicitor and signed by both of us with 2 official witnesses. This now ensures that all our assets, including our house here and flat in the UK - will be inherited in full by the surviving spouse. Normally under Swiss Law children share 50% of the assets equally- unless this 'official pact' is done. Elsewhere on the Forum, this has been challenged as impossible, so starting new thread in order to highjack another. I shall phone our solicitor to make absolutely sure. In the meantime, does anybody here have any experience or professional of this. Thanks.
I'm not really sure what your question is. Under Swiss law you certainely have the right to conclude an inheritance contract with your spouse. But this contract can be challenged in court by your child/children if it violates their succession rights, in particular their claim to a legal portion constituting 3/8 of all the assets.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Calvin for this useful post:
  #20  
Old 30.08.2011, 23:31
Ittigen
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Inheritance laws in CH

It also depends on where you die. If you died in Britain then your pact would be legal, but I am fairly sure that if you die here then the surviving spouse only gets half the assets and all the debts!

There is no point in having a federal law if anyone can cut their relatives out of the estate by signing a document. I believe the document would be legal if all your close relatives agreed and signed up to it as well.

Another way might be to split the property now, apportioning the amounts, with the over-rider they only get their shares when you are both gone to www.englishforum.heaven
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank for this useful post:
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Inheritance Law Question Papri Family matters/health 18 16.11.2015 11:21
American inheritance tax in CH? narco Finance/banking/taxation 8 07.05.2013 11:22
De-facto partner laws in CH? Rahnos Permits/visas/government 1 09.04.2010 21:40
UK/CH Pensions/Tax/Inheritance Expert dannyt986 Finance/banking/taxation 4 30.06.2008 14:18
Capital gains tax and inheritance laws in Geneva & Vaud jwren Finance/banking/taxation 1 14.01.2008 10:51


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 13:00.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0