Inheritance law of Russia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Inheritance law in Part III of the Russian Civil Code. Chapters 61 through 63 of the code are the basic statutes concerning inheritance. In general, the Russian laws concerning inheritance are simple and straightforward. Inheritance tax law in Russia has been non-existent since 2006 when the Russian Parliament abolished all inheritance taxes. However, gifts of real estate properties from individuals other than close relatives are taxed at the standard income tax rate of 13%.[1][2]


Social justice is the main function of the Russian laws on inheritance. One of the main purposes of the law is to take care of those in the family that cannot take care of themselves. If a Russian citizen dies, leaving disabled children or parents, these people are to receive, by law, at least 50 percent of the estate. Otherwise, the state has listed a table of “priorities” for those who are to receive parts of the estate. In the absence of heirs, the estate is declared heirless, and passes to the Russian Government.[1]


Russian law strongly reduces the number of options that a testator has. The priority and disability laws make sure that only certain people can receive an estate. The only real options for a testator are the percentages of an estate that certain levels of priority can receive. Non-relatives can inherit part of the estate, but these are taxed at the flat income rate of 13 percent. Only relatives receive the estate tax-free. In other words, non-relations, while they can receive parts of the estate, are not considered heirs strictly speaking, but persons to whom a (posthumous) gift has been given.

Inheritance cases[edit]

Russian courts of general jurisdiction are competent to resolve inheritance cases. Proceedings must be opened in the last place of residence of the deceased, except for cases where it is unknown, or is situated outside the Russian Federation. In such cases the succession must be opened in the place where the immovable property (or its most valuable part) is situated, but if there is no immovable property, in the place where the most valuable movables are situated.

Russian courts do not necessarily hear the succession proceedings. If there is no dispute, then the local notary public can sanction the acceptance of an inheritance, and can issue certificates for the right of inheritance. Russian notaries public apply Russian law to all activities connected with the protection of the inheritance and with the issuance of the inheritance certificates, even if some of the heirs and/or the deceased are foreigners.[2]

An inheritance must be accepted within a period of six months from the moment of opening of succession. It is convenient that the acceptance of an inheritance can be effected in the name of a foreign heir by his/her representative in the Russian Federation. The certificate for the right of inheritance is usually issued by the notary public after the expiration of six-months. If there is a just cause, this period may be restored after its expiration by a competent court, or by agreement of the heirs.


  1. ^ a b Nasledstvennoe pravo Rossii, Nikiforov
  2. ^ a b Russia Inhertiance law

See also[edit]