How much tax do I have to pay on a succession?

Last update: 10/5/2012

The payment of inheritance tax is governed by the law on inheritance taxes. Joint heirs are exempt from inheritance tax. On the other hand, specific allowances exist for each heir depending on their degree of kinship with the deceased.

Detailed information

How much is inheritance tax?

Click here to see the inheritance tax scale.
Inheritance tax is calculated based on the value of the net assets, after adjustment for deductible debts, distributed to each heir or legatee.
The value of previous gifts made within the last six years is added to that of the assets which make up the estate (law of 23 June 2006).

The inheritance tax is calculated in three stages:

First of all, a personal allowance is applied to the share of each heir; the amount of this personal allowance varies according to the family relationship with the deceased:

  • inheritance in a direct line of descent between parents and children is subject to a personal allowance of 156 974 euros on each share of the net assets;
  • between brothers and sisters, inheritances and gifts are subject to a personal allowance of 15 697 euros;
  • inheritances and gifts received by nephews and nieces are subject to a personal allowance of 7 849 euros.

Then, after deduction of personal allowances, the net share is subject to inheritance tax at a rate which varies according to the family relationship with the deceased.

Finally, a reduction on the amount to be paid may be granted. For example, a reduction is granted on the amount payable if the heir has at least 3 children.

Some heirs are exempt from inheritance tax: the surviving spouse, the deceased’s partner under a civil solidarity pact and brothers and sisters living under the same roof as the deceased, subject to certain conditions (law of 23 June 2006).
NB: for non-registered partners, the inheritance tax rate is 60%.

Can the inheritance be subject to taxation in two or more different States ? Are there double taxation agreements?

Click here for a list of bilateral double taxation agreements signed by France.