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What to do if you inherit property in Spain?

First of all, you should seek the assistance of a Spanish Lawyer, he must be experienced with foreigners about these matters, the legal procedure can be simplified depending on the professional advice that you get. This procedure will be normally easier when there is a Spanish will, disposing of the deceased’s Spanish assets.

Be informed that there exist different inheritance rules for Spanish regions such as Balearic islands, Catalonia, Vasque country, Aragón or Navarra, where the Spanish regional law shall be applied.

Your lawyer should check at the Central Registry of Spanish wills whether the deceased had made a Spanish will or not. He shall present the deceased’s death certificate at the Registry, in order to apply for a legal copy of the Spanish will..

Concerning the estate partition, there must be determined which law shall be applied, each case needs individual study, it also depends on the existence or inexistence of a Spanish or a foreign will.

Some of the documents you will need to inherit property located in Spain are the following:

  • The deceased’s death certificate, and certification on your relationship with the deceased property owner. These documents shall be translated into Spanish.
  • The will.
  • List of the Spanish assets, this is necessary in order to pay the inheritance tax in Spain.
  • Power of attorney, written in Spanish, duly signed by all the heirs before a Notary in your home country, and legalised in the Embassy, designating the person who will represent the heirs in Spain.
  • Documentation about the Spanish assets.
  • Copy of the Spanish will, if it existed.
  • Certificate of the foreign law of succession applicable to the specific case. This document must be translated into Spanish and legalised.
  • Copy of your passport.

Only the copy duly granted of the original documents shall be sent to Spain. All the foreign documents shall be translated into Spanish. The inheritance tax shall be paid in Spain.

These are only general guidelines and not definitive statements of the law, all questions about the law’s applications to individual cases shall be directed to a Spanish lawyer.

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