What notaire fees are due on an inheritance in France?

Most charges are regulated by the state but not all. Several factors can affect the amount charged

It is mandatory to use a notaire for certain types of inheritance
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The management of an inheritance in France requires the attention of a notaire in all but very small inheritances. We look at how the fees work for these services.

The death of a loved one is a particularly difficult time and can be exacerbated by bills coming from all corners, including bank and notaire fees and inheritance tax.

Read more: Key financial steps to take after the death of family member in France 

While there are significant tax allowances for inheritances, such as an allowance of €100,000 for inheritances from a parent to a child, other fees are unavoidable.

The fees charged by banks for freezing the deceased’s accounts, registering the total with the tax authorities and transfering money to the heirs are particularly high in France, although a new law is expected to change this in 2024 (pending approval in parliament).

For inheritances of more than €5,000, a notaire is also required, resulting in fees that rise in proportion to the total value of the inheritance.

Read more: Explainer: Role of notaire in France and what to do if not happy 

How much do notaires charge for managing an inheritance 

The charges are split according to the precise nature of the notaire’s role in managing the inheritance. Some of their fees are state regulated but other fees, such as for consultations or legal advice, can be set independently, usually at a rate of between €200 and €500 an hour.

The state regulated fees are as follows:

Inheritance declaration

You must send a déclaration de succession, or inheritance declaration, to the French tax authorities within six months. 

This complex document can prove expensive:

Division of inheritance

You cannot disinherit your children under French law and assets must be divided equally between them.

This requires an operation on inheritance called the opération de partage entre les héritiers, or division of inheritance. 

While this can be done without a notaire for the most straightforward inheritances or when there is agreement between the inheritors, this is not necessarily advisable.

However, a notaire is mandatory when indivisible assets (such as real estate) are concerned.

Property certificate

When the inheritance includes the transfer of real estate, this must be recorded with a property ownership certificate or certificat de propriété:

Other services:

Notarial deed

In cases when you need to prove an heir’s identity or relationship with the deceased, the notaire can draw up a deed or acte de notoriété for €67.92 (including VAT).

Read more: What is France’s certificate of inheritance, when do I need it? 

Property inventory 

In the absence of a precise inventory, the total value of items included in a succession (furniture, jewellery, paintings, etc.) is taken to be 5% of the total value.

If you would like a more precise inventory, a notaire can do this for €90.55 (including VAT).