Succession Planning

Drafting Wills, Contracts Renouncing an Inheritance / a Compulsory Share

A last will and testament is the basis for any succession planning. So as, in the event of your death, not to jeopardize the succession concept developed by you and our law firm by claims under German law on the part of your children and spouse for payment in cash of a compulsory share in the estate, the conclusion of a notarized agreement renouncing the compulsory share is an important accompanying measure. We will be happy to discuss this sensitive topic with you and your children.

Protection of Assets Against Fragmentation on Transfer from One Generation to the Next

If planning is commenced in time, the amount of inheritance tax to be paid can generally be reduced to an acceptable level, in particular by specifically influencing the inheritance tax base.

Financial Security of the Surviving Spouse

When it comes to succession planning, one of the foremost goals of any married testator should be to ensure the financial security of the surviving spouse. Even if you currently enjoy a perfectly good relationship with your children, provision should be made for possible “bad times”.

Providing for a Former Spouse and Children From a Previous Marriage

Especially in the case of clients who have remarried, conflicts between the children from the first and second marriage are a frequent occurrence. Here, unambiguous arrangements can have an integrating effect and thus serve to keep the peace within the family even after the head of the family has passed away.

Distribution of Decedent’s Estate in the Interest of the Heirs

Sibling rivalry will be avoided by distributing the decedent’s estate in an equitable manner. Involving your children in conceptual considerations early on will serve to promote acceptance of your succession arrangements. Frequently, the objective of such arrangements is to progressively transfer the business to the successor and to secure the financial independence of the transferor.

Transferring the business constitutes a milestone in the entrepreneur’s life. It requires careful preparation by taking into account the wishes of both the transferring and the succeeding generation.

Protecting the Family Wealth in the Case of Divorce

Succession planning and protection of the family assets are not a question of age.
In the case of children who already dispose of or stand to inherit substantial assets, marriage contracts are a “must”. Questions of international family law are of decisive importance if the spouses are not citizens of the same country.

Providing for Minor Children

If there are minor children to consider, comprehensive succession planning is necessary to make provisions in the event that something should happen to both parents at the same time.

Advising the Distribution of an Estate Among Coheirs

In many cases the assets of a community of heirs are not structured in such a way that the economic assets can be distributed in accordance with the exact share to which each individual coheir is entitled. We will assist you in preparing a distribution plan which also takes into consideration the tax consequences.

Determination of Inheritance Tax and Advice and Support in Tax Proceedings

The preparation of estate tax returns can already cause substantial problems and raise questions which may lead to disputes with the tax authorities to the point of judicial proceedings. We will legally represent you in any procedural situation.

Living Wills, Custodianship Directives and Advance Medical Directives

By concluding a living will, a custodianship directive and an advance medical directive you can largely avoid the intrusion into your personal and private affairs by the government during the final phase of your life.