29 Jan Argentina Heirs
Although valid wills are enforceable in Argentina, the Civil Code applies the principle of “forced heirs” to assure spouses, children and certain other persons a minimum share in the estate of which they cannot be deprived without cause. “Cause” for disinheritance is limited to those stated by the Civil Code and must be specifically invoked in the will). Hence, a testator’s disposition of assets is subject to the statutory minimum afforded to forced heirs. With one exception, the persons entitled to a reserved portion are the same persons as the statutory heirs designated by the Argentine Civil Code to receive an inheritance when the decedent dies intestate.
In Argentina, primary heirs in order of priority are: children, parents, grandchildren and grandparents, as well as surviving spouses, siblings and nieces/nephews. These people have a legal right to their inheritance, regardless of what the will dictates. This portion of an estate is untouchable and means that forced heirs are considered Universal Heirs. Their portion of the inheritance is called the “legitimate portion,” and consists of four-fifths of the estate. The testator can delegate the rest of his or her estate, which is called the “disposable portion,” as he or she pleases.
Widows or widowers without children are entitled to half of the inheritance of written wills. If the deceased had children but no spouse, four-fifths of the deceased’s estate goes to the children. While the forced inheritors may not actually receive all four-firths of the estate, the testator cannot guarantee that anything but that one-fifth to go to another person. If a testator leaves more than one-fifth of his or her estate to someone else, the forced inheritors have a legal right to assert a claim over said assets.
The shared possessions are those assets that form part of the conjugal partnership, or the assets that were acquired during the marriage of the deceased. The surviving spouse owns 50% of the assets that were acquired during the marriage. In the case that there are no surviving descendants or ascendants (no children or parents of the deceased), the surviving spouse will inherit 50% of the deceased spouse’s assets. If there are descendants, the other half is divided between the surviving children in equal parts. If there are no children, but there are surviving parents, they will each receive 50% of the inheritance, or if there is only one surviving parent, he or she will receive the total inheritance of the deceased.