Inheriting in Argentina: The testamentary and the Intestate Probate Process in Argentina

Inheriting in Argentina

The testamentary and the Intestate Probate Process in Argentina

LIMERES is an Argentine inheritance and wealth management law firm that offers succession, testamentary and intestate probate, and estate services all throughout the Argentine Republic, especially in the City and the Province of Buenos Aires, the provinces of Cordoba, Mendoza, Santa Fe, Catamarca, San Juan, Santa Cruz, and Chubut.

 


     

    About the Argentine Probate Process

     

    When a person passes away and leaves real property and assets in Argentina, they must be transferred through the Argentine probate court system whether there’s a testament involved or not. If there is a testament, the probate process will be testamentary which is when the judge must determine whether the testament is partially or completely valid, or whether it is con compatible with Argentine jurisdiction because it contradicts Argentine laws, jurisprudence and/or legislation in general.

     

    When the decedent dies without a testament the probate process is intestate and the judge must abide by the general Argentinian laws controlling estates without a will.

    Argentina Inheritance Succession Probate Lawyer Attorney
    Argentina Attorney

    Inheriting in Argentina

     

    In order to file for probate in the Argentinian court system there are a series of documents that must be obtained so that the presentation is valid and becomes accepted by the probate court. Those documents are listed below:

     

    1. The death certificate of the decedent. It becomes the new document of identity of the dead person. Passports and any personal document of identification expire the moment a person has passed away.

     

    1. Birth, marriage, and death certificates and records. The probate court will use them to connect all the heirs with the decedent’s succession throughout the Argentine probate court.

     

    1. Real property deeds for all real estate, land, and farms involved in the inheritance.

     

    1. Tax certificates or bills to prove who has been paying taxes until the death of the title owner, in order to avoid any adverse possession claims by possessors of good or bad faith who could be living in these properties at the time the decedent passed away.

     

    1. Records, deeds, and titles of any movable or immovable property, such as relevant collections of art, jewelry, or alternative investments such as musical instruments, cryptocurrency, stocks, bonds, etc.

    Inheriting in Argentina

    1. For agricultural farmland, it is customary that most knowledgeable buyers will request land surveyor cadastral maps. Also, the farm’s geolocation on Google maps. This is just to explore the land in general with all its pros and cons. It also helps to understand where it is located.

     

    1. When inheriting an Argentine company or shares of a business, the articles of incorporation and bylaws as well as the shares are an essential requirement. Usually, in Argentina, these come in the form of notarial deeds.

     

    1. In the case of inheriting bank accounts, a pdf digital or paper copy of a bank statement should be a way to start the recognition of that bank account. Otherwise, our attorneys can request the judge to issue a broad search through the Central bank. All banks in the jurisdiction should inform whether they hold any checking, saving, or safety boxes under the name or tax identification number of the decedent.

     

    1. If motor vehicles are part of the inheritance, documents attesting ownership should suffice to initiate the transfer. Otherwise, vehicle registries will accept a generic request. They will inform if any vehicles are under the name of the decedent’s name or DNI (document of national identity number).

     

    1. All heirs must sign tax documents with Argentina’s Internal Revenue Service (AFIP). These documents are necessary to pay property taxes. They become effective only from the date the heirs receive a judgment naming them heirs and not before. Before a foreign heir can inherit in Argentina, they must pay personal and property taxes. This applies if they were subject to this requirement.

    All the preceding documents must be in the original version. Furthermore, they must all come in legalized, certified, and apostilled version. If the issuing country is not a member of The Hague Convention for Apostilles, these documents must be legalized at an Argentine consulate to be enforceable with any Argentine local agency.

    The testamentary and the Intestate Probate Process in Argentina

    Additionally, each potential heir to an Argentine estate will need to sign the following documents. These documents will enable an Argentine lawyer to represent them throughout the Argentine court system:

    1. A broad power of attorney with powers to file for succession and probate proceedings. In addition, to sell real estate, farms, and land. Also, to pay taxes and repatriate those funds to the United States of America and/or any other country or jurisdiction where the client may reside or want their inheritance funds remitted.
    2. An attorney-client agreement that sets the legal relationship between the parties in its entirety. The most relevant aspect of an attorney-client agreement is usually the attorney fees a lawyer will charge for their involvement as legal counsel. This fee is negotiable and it ranges varying the jurisdictions where the lawyer is licensed. The minimum percentage can be as low as 10% approximately. There are jurisdictions that allow the lawyer to charge as much as 50% by meeting certain requirements. For instance, the lawyer acting contingent based upon results. Thus, they can finance the entire case with their personal and own funds.
    3. Tax documents must be signed over to the attorney so that a lawyer and a CPA can be named as personal tax representatives. These documents will allow them to process and pay the taxes of foreign heir clients. This is in the case they want to sell their inheritance and have it repatriated abroad/overseas.
    4. A certificate of subsistence and residence. It proves to the court, as well as Argentina’s tax agency, that the heir is not present in Argentina. Therefore, the person cannot assist in any court hearing. Generally speaking, this is used when the heir has no intention of coming several times simply to run most legal errands. In fact, an Argentinian lawyer can do that in their name with a broad power of attorney.

    NOTE: By signing our power of attorney heirs will never have to come to Argentina for any legal errand. Even when transferring property and assets over to the name of the heirs, they can remain in Argentina without the client having to travel. Indeed, these assets can liquidated and repatriated to whatever foreign country the clients demand with written instructions.

    Inheriting in Argentina

     

    The completion of the probate process in Argentina usually takes 4 to 6 months. Afterward, a final judgment names the heirs. However, it is not surprising that if the case ends up in the files of an ineffective court. Consequently, it could take many more months than mentioned. With the rise of COVID, courts in Argentina have actually modernized their process. In fact, they started a digital transformation in which most filings are electronic and not on paper anymore.

     

    The main reason for filing probate is to reach a final court judgment. Then, different Argentine agencies record all the properties and assets. For example, the real property and/or the motor vehicle registries. Thus, the heirs and beneficiaries become the new owners of these registrable properties and assets.

     

    For inquiries please visit Limeres.com

     

    There are other provinces where our attorneys at LIMERES can provide legal/lawyer services. For example, Río Negro, Neuquen, La Pampa, Entre Ríos, Corrientes, Misiones, Chaco, Formosa, Santiago del Estero, Tucuman, Salta, Jujuy, La Rioja, San Luis, and Tierra del Fuego.

     

     

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