Attorneys in Greece – Lawyers in Athens & Thessaloniki

Intestate Inheritance Provisions in Greece

Kosmidis & Partners, attorneys

Partnering international businesses in Greece

What happens if someone dies in Greece without leaving a will (intestate)?

Someone is said to be intestate when that person has died without leaving a will. Intestate inheritance provisions apply in Greece. Such provisions are applicable where:

  1. The deceased has not composed a will.
  2. The deceased has composed a will but that will has been deemed null and void.
  3. The deceased has composed a valid will which caters only for a certain part of the inheritance – the remaining part is dealt out subject to the intestate inheritance provisions.

Articles 1813 to 1824 of the Greek Civil Code (GCC) provide information on the inheritors of the inheritance of a person who has died intestate.

The first class of inheritors is the descendants of the deceased. Τhe closest descendant excludes a more remote descendant of the same bloodline. Children inherit in equal parts. The surviving spouse belongs to this class and his/her portion is ¼ of the estate.

The second class consists of the deceased’s parents, siblings and also the children and grandchildren of siblings who have predeceased the deceased.

The third class consists of the grandparents of the deceased and the children and grandchildren of their descendants,. If, during the induction of inheritors to the will, the grandparents of both bloodlines are alive, then they are the only ones who are bequeathed an inheritance; this is done in equal parts. On the other hand, if the grandparents from both blood lines are not alive, then their children and grandchildren receive the inheritance.

The fourth class of inheritors consists of the great grandparents of the deceased. If alive during their induction in the will, these inheritors inherit in equal parts irrespective of whether they belong to the same or different blood lines.

If no relatives of the four classes exist, then the spouse which survives the deceased is called to act as the intestate inheritor of the entire inheritance. Finally, where no relatives or a spouse can be found, the state is called to act as the intestate inheritor.