TURKISH LAW OF INHERITENCE for CITIZENS OF TURKISH ORIGIN AND LIVING ABROAD

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WHAT IS CERTIFICATE OF INHERITANCE?

It is the court decision indicating valid heirs of the legator and their distributive shares.Heritage cannot be distributed without the certificate of inheritance.

WHO ARE THE LEGAL INHERITORS?

In Turkish Law of Inheritance; spouse, children, grandchildren if the children were deceased, mother and father if there is no child, brothers and sisters if one of the parents was deceased, illegitimate children with established paternity, and adopted children are the legal inheritors. Legacy of the individuals having no heirs is transferred to the government.

DISINHERITANCE; HIDING ASSETS

Hiding assets is a prevalent issue and especially exercised to our citizens living abroad, daughters and children from the first spouse in case of a remarriage.

Legator’s personal intention or taking advantage from agedness of him/her by other inheritors and individuals can lead to transfer of assets to them prior to his/her death and this transfer is exhibited as a sale or grant. Inheritors facing this situation and being wronged should urgently apply to judicial remedy for cancellation of this transaction and protection of their reserved portion of the legacy. There is no lapse of time to bring the issue into court.

WHAT IS THE HEREDITARY PORTION IN AN INHERITANCE?

By operation of law, the legator can transfer the legacy to whoever he/she wants. However, the reserved portion of the other inheritors should be kept off when some of the inheritors get a higher portion or individuals who are not the inheritors are regarded as the beneficiary through testament or inheritance contract. In other words, legal inheritors have an inviolable right on their share of legacy no matter what the testament prescribes. This is called as reserved portion of legacy. Every inheritors reserved portion is dependent on the degree of proximity to the legator.

WHAT CAN OTHER INHERITORS DO WHEN THE LEGATOR SHARES OUT THE PROPERTY IN HIS/HER LIFE?

Legal share of assets is valid if there is no violation of inheritors’ reserved portion. In this share, inheritors denied from their shares or excluded from their reserved portion can take action for reduction or action for nullity. There are some cases frequent in our country especially male children get the higher share through the treatment of transaction as a sale of assets which can be responded with action for reduction or action for nullity due to the reasons of collusion. In our law, male children and female children are on equal grounds in terms of inheritance. Transactions of sale and grant against this rule can be cancelled.

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