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International Succession Law

Would you like to know more about an inheritance from abroad right away? Read more here.

Within international succession law, a whole range of private international law questions may arise. Which court, for instance, has international jurisdiction to hear the dispute? Which law is applicable, and if it is foreign law, what does it look like? And under which conditions is a foreign judgement open to recognition and enforcement? We will be happy to explain international succession law to you and provide expert and independent legal advice.

International Succession Law: a Separate Branch of Private International Law

The rules on international succession law can, to a large extent, be found in the Dutch sources of Book 10 of the Civil Code and the Dutch Civil Procedural Code. Increasingly, EU legislative instruments on international succession law are appearing. These instruments take precedence over national sources.

International succession law consists, among other things, of:

  • International wills;
  • The statute of succession;
  • Settlements of successions;
  • European Certificates of Succession.

Lawyer mr. Channa Samkalden, Prakken d’Oliveira

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Lawyer Tim de Greve, partner at Stibbe.

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Lawyer Channa Samkalden, Prakken d'Oliveira

We have received advice from the IJI on several cases. One example is a case brought by a number of Nigerian farmers against Shell concerning oil pollution in Nigeria. That case is about the application of Nigerian law by the Dutch court. The IJI looked into the framework of tort law in Nigeria for us. We used that advice in the proceedings and also submitted it to the court and it showed, for instance, that our plaintiffs were also entitled to claim against Shell under Nigerian law. The IJI is extremely useful in all such cases because you receive very sound advice on the basis of which you know whether you should have a number of things investigated further. It’s very useful advice at an early stage of your procedure.

Attorney Ria van Seventer, Meesters aan de Maas Advocaten

Our law firm is based in Rotterdam, a city of more than 170 nationalities, so we regularly have to ask the IJI for advice. For example, I had to deal with the recognition of a child by an Italian man, to which Italian law had to be applied. I don’t speak Italian so I could not do that myself. Nor did I have access to the sources which the IJI has.

International succession law is a separate branch of private international law. It is based on the typical principles of private international law, such as the fact that the competent international court and the applicable law must have a close connection with the specific case. In addition, the same method is used to determine the competent court and the applicable law in international law of succession. Thus, there are general and special international grounds of jurisdiction and the legal relationship is the starting point on which the conflict rule is applied and, by extension, the applicable law is determined.

Request Expert and Independent Legal Advice

The IJI in The Hague specialises in providing expert and independent advice on matters relating to private international law, including international succession law. Through our smart knowledge system and broad international network of legal experts, we have already provided more than 240,000 reports in this field. Would you also like to make use of our services? Submit your request for advice using the online form or send an email to info@iji.nl. Within two weeks, you will receive a case-tailored expert report from us, with concise answers to your questions. If you have simple questions, you are welcome to contact us by telephone via +31 70 22 108 60 or via the chatbox, so that we can assist you quickly.

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