Why should you have a Spanish Will?


Posted and filed under Legal Issues in Spain.


I deal with probates and when someone contacts me and they say there was no Spanish Will or even worse no home country Will, my heart sinks. Why? Because they are going to have more trouble and stress than if a Spanish Will had been in place. Next of kin have enough to deal with when someone dies, rather than having to worry about getting extra documents, translations and Hague Apostilles for international use.

What is the difference of having a Spanish Will:-

  • Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration are not needed from a Home Country. These can be expensive and take a long time to obtain. In addition, a Hague Apostille (a stamp from the Foreign Office) will be needed for international use. More expense and time as these can sometimes take a few weeks to obtain.
  • Confusion over having different Wills in different countries is worrying you.  This is nothing to worry about, a Spanish Will only covers assets located in Spain. Thus it does not affect any Will you have elsewhere.
  • You are not risking having to pay any fines and interest on inheritance tax (due to a six month deadline) as with a Spanish Will an estate can be settled quickly and more easily.
  • Avoidance of any doubt. Writing a Spanish Will makes it very clear what was intended with the Spanish assets.
  • A clear, accurate record is easily accessed of whom the heirs to the assets in Spain are intended to be from the Last Wills Registry in Madrid.  This is because when you go with one of our team to make a Spanish will you will be given only a simple copy. The original is kept by the Notary. The Notary will send off to Madrid the details of the Will to the Last Wills Registry. Then you pass away a certificate will have to be obtained from the Registry in Madrid which proves which Notary holds the Last Will and the date on which it was made.

You will have to provide an original death certificate (translated into Spanish with the Apostille seal affixed if the death occurred abroad) to t obtain an original Last Will certificate. When we deal with this, we handle the translation for you. The Spanish death certificate is obtained from the civil registry in the municipality in which the death took place.

If we can help you with the making of a Spanish Will, please let us know. It only takes about an hour usually at a Notary and is relatively  inexpensive.

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