heir (Erbe)

Under German law, the estate (Nachlass) passes directly to the heir (Erbe) or, if there is more than one heir,  to the community of co-heirsSee § 1922 of the German Civil Code (BGB). The heir (Erbe) is the universal successor of the deceased and “steps into the shoes of the deceased”. Unless there is a German executor (Testmamentsvollstrecker) the heir or the community of co-heirs administers the estate. Other persons like the legatee or the forced heir, only have a personal claim against the heir and have no administration right. 

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