Administration and foreign assets
Administration and foreign assets

The following Wills & Probate guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Administration and foreign assets
  • Foreign estates

Foreign estates

Personal representatives (PRs) will come across foreign estates in the context of foreign located assets, foreign-located deceased (in the sense of nationality, residence or domicile) or foreign-located beneficiaries. For those PRs affected by cross border issues, they will need to know about the principles that apply in practice to the administration of an estate of a foreign domiciliary with property in the UK and the key issues where the estate of English domiciliary includes foreign property. The key question here is how beneficiaries of a cross border estate take physical possession of their property but this is just one difference between civil and common law jurisdictions:

Common law Civil law
Estate vests in PRs Estate vests in heirs direct
The identity of the executors is evidenced by court order: the grant of representation Identity of heirs evidenced by notarial act
PR / beneficiary is not liable for debts in excess of assets of the estate Heirs normally take the assets subject to liabilities, except in instances in which they can (or, are obliged by law to) limit their liability for