Inheritance Law & Wills in Turkey

  • Basak
    Basak
    BASAK studied law at the Eastern Mediterranean University and went on to obtain a Masters degree in Energy Law at Yasar University. Basak is specialized in all matters concerning Energy Law, Business and Commercial Law, Real Estate, İnheritance and Family Law. She was admitted to Antalya Bar Association in 2009 . She speaks Turkish and English while Russian is also spoken in her office.
  • Dilruba
    Dilruba
    Dilruba graduated from the Gazi University, Faculty of Law and for several years has been working at one of the top law firms of Ankara specialising on cases regarding insurance law, corporate law, labour law, enforcement law and international private law that embodies different departments for each field of law. She is fluent in English and German as well as her native Turkish
  • Yusuf
    Yusuf
    Yusuf graduated from Izmir University and started working immediately with a prestigious law firm in the city. He now manages his own law office, focusing on commercial litigation, contractual disputes, debt collection, employment law as well as occasionally assisting clients in the areas of property law. Yusuf is a member of Izmir Bar Association and speaks English fluently.
  • Ezgi
    Ezgi
    Ezgi graduated from Marmara University/İstanbul in 2005 and joined one of the largest law firms in İstanbul for 2.5 years to practice regulatory law. Then she continued her career as an in house lawyer in an international company running cruise ports all over the world. She stayed with the company for 8 years where she grew her experience in corporate law, contract law, privatisations, mergers and acquisitions and employment law to a high level. Ezgi is fluent in English.

Introduction

The main laws governing inheritance in Turkey are the Turkish Civil Code, Law on Code of International Private and Procedural Law, and the Code of Civil Procedure.

The main principle regarding jurisdiction over real property is that property is regulated by the laws where it is located. Turkish law is therefore the applicable law governing ownership of real property located within the boundaries of the Republic of Turkey.

If the estate of the deceased includes fixed property assets in Turkey, then Turkish Law is applied, whereas movable assets are subject to the deceased’s national law.

Religion or nationality has no effect on jurisdiction concerning inheritance issues; however if a citizen of a country with which Turkey does not have reciprocity inherits real estate in Turkey, then the property is devolved and the real estate is liquidated.

The Court of Peace and Court of First Instance are the principal courts which hear lawsuits on inheritance issues. The length of time taken to complete the proceedings is unpredictable, since it depends on the complexity of the case and the caseload of the court.

 

Why Make a Will?

If you die intestate, your estate will be wound up according to the rules of intestacy. These can quite often be very complicated. By making a Turkish will you may help your successors avoid time-consuming and costly legal proceedings and to suffer unnecessarily due to complications that may arise during the winding up of your estate.

Dying intestate can have even more serious implications. For example, if you are not married, Turkish inheritance law will not automatically entitle your life partner to your estate. Therefore, your partner may end up inheriting nothing from your estate if you die without a Turkish Will.

On the other hand, a Turkish Will will enable you to make specific arrangements concerning your estate. For example, you can create a life interest in your property or impose certain duties on the beneficiaries to your estate, or even make conditional gifts.

If you make a Will you will be able to appoint an executor who will be able to wind up your estate more efficiently.

 

Last Will & Testament Specifications

Foreign nationals who plan to bequeath real property in Turkey should make a will in the form specified by the Turkish Civil Code.

The testator should have full mental capacity, and be more than fifteen years old. In case of error, fraud or duress, the will is not valid.

A will may be created in official form, in handwriting, or orally. An official Will is made in the presence of a Notary Public or a Justice of the Peace in accordance with certain formal conditions, and is signed by two witnesses.

A holograph is written entirely in the testator’s handwriting and must include the place, day, month, and year in which it was created as well as the signature of the testator. A will prepared in this way should be given to the court or a notary public for safekeeping. In exceptional circumstances, an oral Will may be considered to have fulfilled the formalities.

Advocate Abroad can assist English-speaking clients to create a last Will and Testament to ensure the appropriate distribution of their property assets in Turkey and also to process the inheritance of an estate in Turkey.

Client Testimonials

Reviews of Advocate Abroad lawyers placed by clients directly on the Wufoo client survey platform:

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    Vicky S, UK
    Tuesday, April 17, 2018
    Alvaro answered my emails and all my questions efficiently and helped me were I did not understand through the whole process of moving the tenant and selling the property and arranging and introducing... an estate agent.

    He has exceeded my expectations after being let down by previous lawyers in Spain when its been a very traumatic time for me.
  • Default Avatar75
    Pernilla, London
    Friday, April 13, 2018
    We had excellent service from Esther at Advocate Abroad when buying a property in Las Palmas, Gran Canaria.

    Esther speaks both Spanish and English, and is very friendly, professional and genuine. ...She took care of the whole purchasing process and explained all the steps for us, including giving advice on Spanish bank account, NIE numbers etc.

    We are very pleased with all the help we have received and can highly recommend Esther. Thank you so much!
  • Default Avatar75
    David Pratt, Alhaurin del Grande
    Friday, April 13, 2018
    Alvaro gives me confidence that he understands the issue and gives me practical solutions. He works rapidly and efficiently. I would strongly recommend his services.
  • Default Avatar75
    ESP, London
    Wednesday, March 28, 2018
    Cristina was extremely helpful, she couldn't have done more. Her English is sufficient and I would definitely recommend her to friend.
  • Default Avatar75
    L Marshall, London
    Wednesday, March 28, 2018
    Rosa was excellent. Very efficient and professional.

    Responsive and always available. Extremely helpful - we did not understand the process and she guided us through.

    We would not hesitate to ...recommend her.
  • Default Avatar75
    Phil Loughton, Las Lagunas de Mijas
    Tuesday, March 20, 2018
    Alvaro was extremely helpful and the simple process I needed managed was dealt with quickly and efficiently. I would certainly recommend him to friends.
  • Default Avatar75
    John Burchell, Arroyo De la Miel
    Tuesday, March 20, 2018
    Alvaro was very professional, helpful and friendly. Understood things quickly. Explained things well in English. Very easy to contact at any time.
  • Default Avatar75
    A. Kavanagh, Glasgow
    Thursday, March 15, 2018
    Miguel provided a great service and fully explained to me about the procedures with tax & business registration. My emails and questions where always answered straight away with an immediate response ...or solution.

    Very helpful and very friendly I would definitely recommend to anyone considering using Advocate Abroad
  • Default Avatar75
    Robert Davies, Mallorca
    Monday, March 12, 2018
    Very supportive and clear on producing a suitable divorce settlement. Efficient, understanding and professional.
  • Default Avatar75
    A.Kavanagh, Glasgow
    Friday, March 09, 2018
    Rosa was exceptional at helping me setting up my business abroad.

    This was a big move for me and Rosa fully explained everything to me in detail so I had a full and clear understanding of the lega...l side of things as well as always promptly responding to any emails or questions I had.

    I couldn’t of asked for a better lawyer and I would 100% recommend Rosa to anyone who is deciding to move abroad.

    Great service could not be happier.
  • Default Avatar75
    Adam Clark, Tenerife
    Friday, March 09, 2018
    Oliver was very professional. He explained things very clearly and honestly at all times and in the end we got the best result possible in my particular case.

    Many thanks to him for his high level ...of service.
  • Default Avatar75
    Patrick Martel, Canada
    Wednesday, March 07, 2018
    For being in another country and all our back and forth communicating over emails .. I thought Rosa did a brilliant job. Thankfully she was able to help where no one else was willing ..
  • Default Avatar75
    Robert Scott, UK
    Wednesday, March 07, 2018
    First class service. Rosa's professionalism, advice and patience were all exemplary! Keep up the good work. Will certainly recommend the service to friends!
  • Default Avatar75
    Martina, Plymouth
    Monday, March 05, 2018
    Erardo was fantastic and helped immensely during a very difficult situation.

    He consulted with my lawyer in the UK and explained to her what needed done. Without him the situation would not have be...en resolved. He was very understanding and I would have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending him. Outstanding.
  • Default Avatar75
    M Pearce, Marbella
    Monday, March 05, 2018
    Miguel was extremely helpful, he couldn't have done more:

    Always kept us updated on the progress of our purchase
    Always responded to emails in a professional and timely manner
    Always explained to... our understanding all aspects of the legalities about the purchase
    Very approachable,courteous and professional

    So much better to deal with than UK property lawyers!

  • Default Avatar75
    Tony, London
    Wednesday, February 28, 2018
    The service I received from nada was very helpful.

    The tasks were completed to the highest standard and would definitely use her services again in the future. All correspondence was received in a ...very timely manner. Highly recommended.
  • Default Avatar75
    Holly, Lanzarote
    Friday, February 23, 2018
    The divorce process could have been explained more clearly and accurately so that a more realistic time for completion can be attained.
  • Default Avatar75
    Julia Alcock, Puerto Rico, Gran Canaria
    Thursday, February 22, 2018
    Esther was very friendly and approachable. She was professional and answered any questions I asked. We would definitely use her again in the future.
  • Default Avatar75
    Tamara Malcolm, Mallorca
    Tuesday, February 20, 2018
    Rosa was and is extremely knowledgeable and helpful. Her advice was excellent and i will definitely be using her expertise again in the future.
  • Default Avatar75
    Nick Nicolaou, Oviedo
    Tuesday, February 20, 2018
    Very Satisfied with Miguel's work. He was very helpful and we would definitely use his services again in the future.
  • Default Avatar75
    Gavin Jones, UK
    Monday, February 19, 2018
    It was a real pleasure to have Miguel working on my behalf to file my non-resident taxes. He was extremely helpful, gave reassuring advice and I had a high level of confidence in the transactions.

    ...Miguel is now acting as my fiscal representative in Spain and I plan to continue to use his firm's services for all my tax requirements.
  • Default Avatar75
    Martin Hickey, Benidorm
    Sunday, February 18, 2018
    Very friendly and knowledgeable and professional.

    Juan explained the plus and the negatives on various subjects and allowed us to make up our own mind.

    I have already recommended him to our fri...ends.
  • Default Avatar75
    Andrew Bullen, UK
    Friday, February 16, 2018
    Rosa was very professional at all times when dealing with me. Her English was second to none and she always kept me informed of progress via email promptly.

    I wouldn't hesitate to use Rosa in the ...future for any legal issues I have.
  • Default Avatar75
    Tamara Reeves, Australia
    Thursday, February 15, 2018
    Anna was very knowledgeable and had prior experience dealing with English clients. She spent a lot of time explaining information and I was never rushed.

    I have continued to use Anna since my firs...t meeting as I trust her judgement and know that she will look after my best interests.
  • Default Avatar75
    Ali Hashemi, Alicante
    Wednesday, February 14, 2018
    Rafael was extremely helpful, accommodating and understanding. He couldn't have done more.
  • Default Avatar75
    Alan W T Duguid, Montserrat, Valencia
    Wednesday, February 14, 2018
    Ramon was very helpful and answered my questions and explained the legal process that I was enquiring about.

    I would liked to have seen a follow up email detailing what was discussed to ensure that... my understanding and recollection of the meeting was completely correct.
  • Default Avatar75
    Keith Round, La Herradura, Spain
    Monday, February 12, 2018
    The advice provided was clear, easy to follow and allowed me to secure the required documentation from the Spanish Authorities quickly.

    Rosa was very proactive in following up when I was delayed in... providing inputs and always delay with any questions promptly.

    I would not hesitate to recommend Rosa to friends and colleagues and I would use her again in the future
  • Default Avatar75
    GWE, Ireland
    Thursday, February 08, 2018
    My lawyer Nada was extremely effective to make the case and get a result!
  • Default Avatar75
    Chris Jones, Cambrils
    Tuesday, February 06, 2018
    Regardless of the situation Emma, looked for the best possible way to assist under the circumstances. Emma was very approachable and professional.
  • Default Avatar75
    Richard Quick, Estepona
    Sunday, February 04, 2018
    I was particularly impressed by Miguel's approachability & professionalism, excellent service!

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