We recently decided to have work done on our house and were told by the firm that we needed an attestation giving approval from one of our children.
We are owner-occupiers with no debt and, although both over 75, we are in good health and not suffering from any physical or mental decline.
Fortunately, we have a good relationship with our children and the signature was a formality, but clearly that would not be the case for everyone.
It seems that in France we cannot ‘spend our children’s inheritance’ without their permission! My (French) son-in-law tells me this is put in place for our protection, but I cannot quite get over the insult!
Catherine King, by email
Editor’s note: French law is indeed generally protective of children’s inheritance rights but this scenario sounds excessive, assuming the property is not partly-owned by your children.
This was confirmed by notaire François Trémosa of Tremosa-Leschelle et Associés, near Toulouse: there is no law imposing any permission unless you are deemed mentally incapable but in such a situation it would be a judge that imposes precautions, not a renovation company.