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The Intricacies of International Inheritance: An Australian Estate with Mykonos Legacy


When an Australian resident with a historic property in Mykonos, Greece, passes away, the inheritance process involves navigating the complex terrain of international estate law. This scenario is particularly challenging when the property is a cherished family asset, passed down through generations.

In such cases, understanding the concept of an 'international will' is crucial. An international will is recognised under the Unidroit International Wills Convention. These wills are designed to be recognised across signatory countries. However, it's important to note that Greece is not a signatory to this convention although Australia is. Therefore, while an international will might facilitate the probate process in Australia, it might not have the same legal standing in Greece.

Inheritance in Greece is governed by its domestic laws, which follow the principle of forced heirship. This means a portion of the estate is legally reserved for certain family members, such as children or the surviving spouse, potentially overriding the stipulations in an Australian will. In contrast, Australian inheritance laws generally respect the wishes expressed in a will, provided they comply with legal requirements.

Given these complexities, the role of specialised legal professionals becomes indispensable. Estate planning lawyers from firms like Abbott and Mourly Lawyers are adept at handling such cross-border estate issues. Their expertise in dealing with various nationalities and understanding of international estate law is critical in ensuring a smooth inheritance process.

Abbott and Mourly can provide guidance on creating a will that considers the legal nuances of both Australia and Greece. They can also assist in navigating Greek inheritance tax obligations, which are based on the relationship to the deceased and the value of the estate, and facilitate the transfer of property titles.

Moreover, Abbott and Mourly’s experience with multi-national estates makes them particularly suited to address the emotional and familial aspects that often accompany the inheritance of ancestral properties. They can help mediate family discussions and provide solutions that respect the legacy of the property while adhering to legal requirements.

In conclusion, inheriting a property in Mykonos or anywhere in the world as part of an Australian estate underscores the need for expert legal advice and comprehensive estate planning. The involvement of specialised lawyers like Abbott and Mourly is crucial in navigating the complex interplay of Australian and Greek laws, ensuring the deceased's wishes are honoured, and the family legacy is preserved.

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