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The time is winding down. Check-up your existing estate planning

A check-up should be done for existing estate planning documents preferentially before January 1, 2023, when the first part of the revised inheritance law enters into force.

Current arrangement, clear wording

Last will and testament, marriage contract, contract of inheritance

nDo any documents relating to inheritance law already exist? Yes? A will or inheritance contract? What is its content? Are there other documents, such as prenuptial agreements, advance directives, powers of attorney, living wills, market value assessments? What is provided for in them?

Are the intended arrangements still current? Have your personal or financial circumstances changed since then? Have any persons predeceased you? Are there any new people that are close to your heart?

Statutory share

Are there any regulations regarding the compulsory share? How are these formulated? Who does it affect and why?

Parents will no longer be protected by compulsory shares as of 1.1.2023 according to Art. 470 para. 1 revised Swiss Civil Code (CC).  The compulsory shares of the descendants will be reduced. The available quota will be at least half.

Have you made your spouse a beneficiary by means of a usufruct and freely disposed of the available quota? This will be half of the estate as opposed to the current quarter.

Potential divorce

How would you like to handle possible future divorces as well as inheritance and marital benefits? Should the financially weaker party still be covered?

Contract of inheritance

Does an inheritance contract contain explicit reservation clauses? The revised law provides for a policy shift: From the current liberal law regarding property dispositions after the conclusion of an inheritance contract to the ban on gifts and donations. Dispositions upon death and gifts inter vivos will be subject to challenge if they are incompatible with the obligations under the inheritance contract and have not been reserved.

There is no transitional legislation. Can you rescind the contract? Is everyone still alive? Are they capable of judgement?

Wait and see or take action

If you do nothing and leave the old testamentary disposition in place, the general principles of interpretation of testamentary dispositions will apply. In the event of a dispute, a judge will decide according to the general rules.

Plan actively, assume responsibility

Become active, use your options, regardless of age and family circumstances. Don’t wait until your time is up. Then it will be too late.

Leave nothing to chance, certainly not your hard-earned assets. Call me!

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