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Changes in the Inheritance Law

On 18th October 2015 the amendment to the Code Civil which limits the liability for succession debts comes into force.

Currently, if an heir does not make any declaration on accepting or rejecting succession, he or she is liable for all succession debts. This article is a kind of a “trap” for heirs who do not know the law or are not aware of financial situation of deceased.

New rules of succession will be applied to the succession after the people who will die not sooner than 18th October 2015. The silence of their heirs will mean acceptance under benefit of inventory, which signify that they will be liable for debts of the deceased only to the value of the estate’s assets established in the list or record of the inventory.

Example:

The deceased who died on 18th October 2015, had an apartment (worth 200.000 PLN) and debts in the amount of 1.000.000 PLN. His heir is obliged to pay off to the creditors only 200.000 PLN.

However, heirs have to remember that debts must be paid off proportionally to all creditors, otherwise they will be obliged to pay them to the amount they would have been obliged to satisfy them, if they had duly repaid all succession debts

Example:

The deceased had three debts: creditor A: 200.000 PLN, creditor B: 300.000 PLN, creditor C: 500.000 PLN, whereas the values of the estate’s assets is 200.000 PLN. The heir should pay off the following amounts: creditor A: 40.000 PLN, creditor B: 60.000 PLN, creditor C: 100.000 PLN. If the heir paid off the whole debt to the creditor A, he or she would be obliged to pay to the remaining creditors the amount mentioned above, which means that they would be liable for succession debts to the amount of 360.000 PLN.

 

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