Which law applies?
Can I choose the law applicable to my succession?
Last update: 10/7/2012
This depends on the deceased’s nationality. The law which applies to the succession is the law of the country whose nationality the deceased possessed at the time of his or her death. Czech law does not allow any derogations from this rule, which means that a testator cannot choose the applicable law for his/her succession.
Which criteria are used to determine the applicable law?
Conflict of laws rules of the Act on Private International Law are based on a unitary system. The whole of the succession is governed by the law of the State whose nationality the deceased possessed at the moment of death (Sec. 17 of the Law No. 97/1963 Coll.).
Renvoi: The reference back to Czech law or the law of a third State may be accepted if it is in keeping with reasonable and just settlement of the relations involved (Sec. 35 of the Law No. 97/1963 Coll.)
Which principles govern the choice of applicable law?
Czech law does not provide for the choice of applicable law.
What are the main international agreements in force?
The list of the treaties binding on the Czech Republic may be found on the web pages of the Czech Ministry of Justice at http://portal.justice.cz.
The main multilateral treaties concerning cross-border successions binding for the Czech Republic are:
The Hague Convention of 15 November 1965 on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters
The Hague Convention of 18 March 1970 on the Taking of Evidence Abroad in Civil or Commercial Matters
European Convention on Information on Foreign Law (London, 7 June 1968) and Additional protocol to the Convention (Strasbourg, 15 March 1978)
The Hague Convention of 2 October 1973 Concerning the International Administration of the Estates of Deceased Persons (applicable only between the Czech Republic, the Slovak Republic and Portugal).
The main bilateral agreements in this field are agreements with Poland (21 December 1978, as amended), the Slovak Republic (29 October 1992), Hungary (28 March 1989), former Soviet Union (applicable to its succession states and Belarus, Kirgizstan and Moldova, 12 August 1982), Ukraine (28 May 2001).
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Successions in the Czech Republic
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