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Inheritance law in Turkey after the death of foreign nationals who own property in Turkey

With recent changes to Turkey’s property ownership law, it has become easier for foreigners to own propertyQuestions have increased as to what the status of real estate in Turkey will be in the event of the death, exit or withdrawal of Turkish nationality from foreign nationals.

We will briefly and clearly clarify the most important points regarding the inheritance law for foreigners in Turkey.

Inheritance according to Turkish law

In accordance with Article 20/2 of Law No. 5718, the provisions relating to inheritance, possession and division are subject to Turkish state law.
Also in article 20/1 of the Turkish Inheritance Act, inheritance is subject to national law, which means that Turkish law will be applied in relation to the property of the deceased in Turkey without regard to the nationality of the mother he holds.

In other words, the law of the country of nationality of the deceased person will not be applied, but the Turkish Inheritance Act will be applied with regard to his or her property in Turkey.

How do foreign national heirs enjoy their rights in Turkish inheritance law?

After the death of a foreign person who owns real estate in Turkey and regardless of whether that person or his heirs are Turkish citizens or not, foreign nationals benefit from all legal rights relating to that property.
For this reason, it requires the extraction of the inheritance inventory document extracted from the Turkish courts in order to carry out the transfer of real estate in Turkey to the legal heirs.

This means that a legacy inventory document must be obtained from a Turkish court because the transfer of real estate in Turkey will not be carried out with a legacy inventory document issued by a foreign country, “i.e. the mother state of the deceased person.”

How to get a legacy inventory document in Turkey

The legal heir of the deceased foreigner must translate the document of the inventory of inheritance or restrict souls into Turkish and ratify it from the notary and apply to the Magistrate’s Court in the area where the property is located to issue a document limiting a legacy used within Turkish territory and institutions. 
Because the issuance of the inheritance inventory document is an urgent procedure, this document will be secured by the court within a short period of time.
After obtaining the inheritance inventory document, the Directorate of Real Estate Records is approached and the transfer of the property register to the legal heirs is carried out with ease.

The papers that are briefly required are:

  1. Translation of the inheritance accounting document issued by the foreign state and the certificate of death of the deceased person into Turkish and its ratification by the notary
  2. Go to the Magistrate’s Court in the area where the property is located to issue a inheritance inventory document.
  3. Go to the Directorate of Real Estate Records and you have a inheritance inventory document issued by the Turkish Court to carry out the transfer of property ownership

Who are the legal heirs to Turkish law?

  1.  If the deceased has a husband and children who live regardless of their gender, are males or females entitled to 1/4 inheritance to the wife and 3/4 inheritance to the children.
  2. If only children lived, the entire inheritance is divided equally between children regardless of their gender, male or female.
  3. If there are no children of the deceased person, the inheritance is divided between the wife and the parents, in which case the half is entitled to 1/2 of the inheritance to the wife and the other half to the parents.

These are the inheritance rights in Turkish inheritance law, this case varies according to the relatives of the deceased living (children, mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, brothers and others) and if the deceased has no legal heirs and if he does not have a will liberated in accordance with Turkish law, the entire funds remain for the government treasury of the Turkish Republic.

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