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Can I disinherit my siblings?

I can't stand my brother and my other sibling has plenty of money

1 April 2011

I HAVE recently bought a house and moved to France from the UK. I can’t stand my brother and my other sibling has plenty of money. Is there a way that I can stipulate that, should I die, everything, for example, goes to a home for abandoned cats? G.R.

France has strict inheritance laws that, notably, oblige you to leave a set part of your inheritance to your children (there are also certain rules protecting a surviving spouse); however, they do not oblige you to leave anything to siblings.

Your property would go to your siblings only if you made no will and you had no surviving spouse or parents, who would have priority claims.

If you want to make sure this does not happen, make a will. This can be drawn up yourself or with the help of a notaire, but in either case it is advisable to lodge a copy with a notaire, who can register it on a national registry so it will be readily identified when necessary.

A Connexion helpguide on inheritance, priced €7.50 from our website, contains more on this.

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