Which law applies?
Can I choose the law applicable to my succession?
Last update: 10/7/2012
This depends on the nationality of the deceased. Indeed, the law applicable to the succession is the law of the country which the deceased had the nationality of at the time of death. Austrian law admits no exceptions to this law, in that you cannot choose the law applicable to your succession.
Which criteria are used to determine the applicable law?
A succession as a result of death will be determined according to the deceased’s personal status at the time of his/her death. The deceased’s personal status is determined by nationality (§§ 9 and 28 Abs 1 IPRG – Law on private international law). There are, however, a certain number of exceptions to this principle.
If a succession is settled in Austria, the acquisition of the estate and liability for the estate’s debts will be governed by Austrian law (§ 28 Abs 2 IPRG).
Renvoi: if the relevant foreign law provides for the application of Austrian law, Austrian material provisions shall apply (§ 5 Abs 2 IPRG). More detailed provisions relative to the transfer of jurisdiction and applicable law are outlined in § 5 IPRG.
Which principles govern the choice of applicable law?
Austrian law does not provide for the choice of applicable law.
What are the main international agreements in force?
Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYRM), Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia: Art. 29-40 of the treaty signed between the Republic of Austria and the Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia on reciprocal judicial relations, including the final protocol of 16 December 1954
Greece: Additional article of 12 June 1856 to the trade and navigation treaty concluded on 4 March 1835, concerning the settlement of a succession for the personal property of nationals of the two countries
Poland: Art. 36 and following of the treaty of 11 December 1963 signed between the Republic of Austria and the People’s Republic of Poland on mutual relations concerning civil judicial affairs and documents and notarial deeds
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Successions in Austria
Current country: Germany