Inheritance law in Turkey for foreigners who own real estate

 If the person claiming the inheritance in Turkey is a foreigner, he must issue the inheritance certificate by the Turkish courts and the Turkish law of inheritance is applied if the foreign property of the person in Turkey is real property.

But if the inheritance of the foreign person is not real estate, in this case the national law of the country of the deceased foreign person is applied in Turkey.

Where can the inheritance certificate be obtained in Turkish courts?

If the person dies in Turkey, court procedures are taken and the inheritance certificate is issued at the last place of residence inside Turkey . In the event that a person dies in a country other than Turkey, court procedures are taken and the inheritance certificate is issued from the court to which the area of ​​his property is located inside Turkey.

All papers and documents that prove the lineage must be brought from the register to which the inheritor belongs in the mother country, and a declaration of heirs must be brought to obtain the inheritance.

How is inheritance distributed in Turkey?

In Turkey, the inheritance is distributed equally among boys, regardless of whether they are male or female. And ¼ of the inheritance is for the wife + ¾ of the rest of the inheritance is distributed among the children equally.

In the event that the deceased person has no children, and there is a father, mother, brothers and husband, in this case, ¼ of the father, mother, and brothers, and ¾ of the husband.

Inheritance law and is the property inherited in Turkey

With the recent changes made in the real estate ownership law  in Turkey,  it has become easier for foreigners to own homes and real estate in Turkey, and questions have increased regarding what will be the status of real estate in Turkey in the event of the death of the foreigner, their exodus, or the withdrawal of Turkish citizenship from them.

We will briefly and clearly explain the most important points regarding the inheritance law in Turkey for foreigners:

Inheritance in Turkey
Inheritance law in Turkey

Inheritance according to Turkish law

According to Article 20/2 of Law No. 5718, the provisions relating to the reasons for opening, holding and dividing the inheritance are subject to the law of the country in which the inheritance is located.

In Article 20/1 of the Turkish Inheritance Law, the inheritance is subject to the national law “meaning the law of the Turkish state,” which means that Turkish law will be applied to the deceased’s real estate located in Turkey without regard to the mother nationality he holds.

In other words, the law of the country whose nationality the deceased person holds will not apply, but rather the Turkish inheritance law will be applied with respect to his real estate located in Turkey.

How do heirs of foreign nationals enjoy their rights in the Turkish inheritance law?

Personal Status Law in Turkey

After the death of a foreigner who owns  real estate in Turkey,  regardless of whether this person or his heirs are Turkish citizens or not, foreign nationals benefit from all legal rights related to that property.

For this, it is required to extract the inheritance inventory document that will be taken from the Turkish courts in order to carry out the procedures for transferring real estate located in Turkey to the legal heirs.

There is no provision in the inheritance law in Turkey that prevents the Turkish court authorized to issue an inheritance inventory document from issuing the document. This means that an inheritance inventory document must be obtained from a Turkish court because the transfer process related to real estate in Turkey will not be carried out with an inheritance inventory document issued by a state foreign.

How can I obtain an inheritance inventory document in Turkey?

After the legal heir of the deceased foreigner in Turkey or his representative, by translating the inheritance inventory document + family record obtained from his country into the Turkish language and ratified by the notary public, then he submits a request to the Magistrate’s Court in the region where the property is located to issue the inheritance inventory document.

And since the issuance of the inheritance inventory document is considered an urgent procedure, this document will be secured by the court within a short period of time.

After obtaining the inheritance inventory document, the directorate of real estate records and the procedure for transferring the property registry to the legal heirs is carried out with ease. It is preferable to do all these procedures by a lawyer.

What are the documents required to obtain an inheritance in Turkey?

  • Translation of the inheritance inventory document issued by the foreign country for the deceased person + the death certificate of the person into Turkish and attested by the notary public
  • Go to the Magistrate’s Court in the area where the property is located and submit the documents mentioned above to issue a document limiting the inheritance located in Turkey.
  • Go to the Directorate of Real Estate Records and have the inheritance inventory document issued by the Turkish court to carry out the process of transferring ownership of real estate and transferring its title deed to the legal heirs.

Who are the heirs in Turkish law and how is the inheritance distributed in Turkey?

  • If the deceased had a spouse and children living regardless of their gender, whether male or female, the wife is entitled to ¼ of the inheritance and ¾ of the inheritance to the children.
  • If only children live, the entire inheritance is divided equally among the children, regardless of whether they are male or female.
  • If the deceased person has no children, the inheritance is divided between the wife and parents, and in this case ½ of the inheritance is entitled to the wife and the other half to the parents.

These are the inheritance rights in the Turkish inheritance law, this status varies according to the relatives of the deceased living (children, mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, brothers and others).

If the deceased does not have any legal heirs, and if he does not have a will made in accordance with Turkish law, the entire funds remain for the government treasury of the Turkish Republic.

Is there an inheritance tax in Turkey? How is it calculated?

According to the law in Turkey, any immovable property of a deceased person is subject to inheritance tax.

However, compared to other countries such as the European Union, the value of the inheritance tax in Turkey is relatively low and varies according to the value of the investor’s property, i.e. the tax rate is a percentage less the lower the price of the property registered in the  title deed.

The percentage of the inheritance tax in Turkish law varies between 1 to 30% depending on the status of residence of the inheriting person and the geographical location and value of the property

Below is an explanation of the inheritance tax rates based on the value of the property in euros:

  • 1% for properties with a value of 53,333 or less
  • 3% for property valued at 170,000
  • 5% for property of value 426,667
  • 7% for property of value 926,667
  • 10% for property of value 926.667
Inheritance law in Turkey

Frequently asked questions about inheritance in Turkish law

Is the property inherited in Turkey?

Yes, the property in Turkey is inherited and divided equally between the children.

What is the inheritance of the wife in Turkish law?

If the children of the deceased are living, then the wife is entitled to a quarter of the value of the inheritance

Does the law in Turkey adopt equality in inheritance Turkey

Yes, the principle of equality between females and males is adopted in the Turkish inheritance law.

Click to learn more details about the inheritance distribution law in Turkey