I highly recommend all Spanish property owners to make a separate will in Spain for the follwing reasons:


As a Spanish lawyer I know the bureaucracy of the Spanish Legal System, and due to the slow bureaucracy system all Spanish property owners should make a will in order to avoid causing their loved ones unnecessary problems after their death.


Once the death of an owner of a Spanish property ocurres and there is no will at all, the Spanish Authorities will ask for the legal beneficiary of the deceased, according to the English intestacy rules. This will have to be explained by an English Public Notary through a certificate of law, duly legalised, translated  and stamped by the Hague Convention Agreement and then explained by a Spanish Lawyer to the Spanish Authorities.


According to my experience the procedure is slow, expensive as well as time-consuming.


In case you have an UK will dealing with worldwide assets, the UK will must also be translated, legalised and stamped and you will need a certificate of law confirming that the will is according to UK law. This will be also more expensive than having a Spanish will, and you will have serious problems  in case you have included in your will trusts and executors  which are not always recognised by Spanish Law. It could take several years to have the deed registered in the land Registry.


If you decide to grant a Spanish will, this can be drafted according to UK rules, and therefore avoid Spanish rules of compulsory inheritance. The will can be restricted to the Spanish assets and not affect to UK ones, and will allow the beneficiaries to dispose of the Spanish estate quickly compared to the other cases. 


If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact me at jose@lawfirminspain.com



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