Renunciation of Future Rights of Inheritance (Erbverzicht)

Relatives and the spouse of the testator may renounce their statutory right of inheritance by contractual agreement with the decedent during the latter’s lifetime.  The person renouncing is excluded from intestate succession as though he had no longer been alive at the time of the devolution of the inheritance; he does not have a right to the forced share. See § 2346(1) BGB.  The person renouncing is excluded from intestate succession as though he had no longer been alive at the time of the devolution of the inheritance; he does not have a right to the forced share. The renunciation may be restricted to the right to the forced share (Pflichtteil). See § 2346 (2) BGB (Pflichtteilsverzicht). To be effective, the contract of renunciation must be notarized by a German notary (Notar) or equivalent. See § 2348 BGB. The agreement to renounce future rights of inheritance (Erbverzicht) is usually, but not necessarily, linked to the payment of compensation. This compensation is subject to German gift tax. 


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