Declaration of Succession in Italy

My client (domiciled and resident in England) died in 2017 and his estate included a house in Italy.

He left a will made according to English law which included an election for English law to apply to his estate wherever situated.His widow is the sole beneficiary. Early indications are that the English will is accepted in Italy as determining the succession to the property there

She has been told by the notary that as well as proof of the will death and probate she must provide a declaration of succession.

Can any member with experience of Italy tell me what is required and by whom this declaration should be made?

She has also been told that the papers have to be files within one year of the death- which is fast approaching. Is this a requirement to be taken seriously and what are the consequences of failure?

Tim Gibbons

Perhaps an affidavit of English law by a practising English solicitor will suffice.

Cliona O’Tuama


Our experience is that the English Executors make such Declaration before an English Notary (or better before an Italian Notary based in Italy). Obviously the local Italian Notary can advise further as to the particular succession rights in question once he has full details as to the family and the various relationships and whether or not any persons are deceased and have heirs who could succeed.

Peter Double / Probate Resealing Services

Yes if there is immovable property in Italy there must be a declaration of succession filed.

This is because land transfer tax (imposte catastali and imposte ipotecari) are payable to transfer the title to the heirs, this has to be paid before or at the moment of presenting the declaration of succession to the Agenzia delle Entrate.

The declaration is a form which contains details of the deceased, the heirs, and the assets in Italy, and attached to it would be a copy of the will. I would normally file this with a legalised copy of the Grant of Probate and will, with a sworn translation into Italian.

It should not be a serious concern if you are reaching the 12 months. If you present it after, fines start accruing…but do start relatively small. It depends on the value of the property.

It is quite common that there is one overseas will which has to go through probate first, and that obviously will cause delay before the Italian decclaration can be filed.

Charlotte Oliver
Oliver & Partners, Rome