Processing an inheritance and probate when the heir is a minor or disable. Sale of inherited assets. Foreigners in Spain.

Acceptance of inheritance and sale by a minor or disable heir

In today’s article, we will see what happens when we have a minor or disable heir in the inheritance. And, if possible, the sale by said minor or incapable of the inherited assets. Especially in relation to real estate assets.

Can a minor or disable inherit in Spain? .

The answer is YES. They can do it through you’re their legal representatives. This is deduced from the Spanish civil code, which is applicable to Spanish nationals.

Thus, in the case of Spanish minors, the parents who exercise parental authority can accept the inheritance. Only to repudiate (or renounce) the inheritance will they need court authorization. In fact, it is very common for a father or mother to accept on behalf of the child the inheritance left by grandparents, etc.

In the case of the incapacitated or disables, the legal guardians and deputies will need a judicial authorization, if they do not accept the inheritance for the benefit of inventory (that is, with limitation of the heir’s responsibility). Therefore, in the case of incapacitated persons, they will normally go to court to request court authorization.

Expatriates Minors and Disable in Spain. Can they inherit?

The answer is DEPENDS.

Although normally Yes. And the reason is that the ability to inherit of foreigners in Spain depend on the law of their nationality. Therefore, they will be able to do so, providing that according to their personal law, it is possible.

And this, because according to the article 9 of the Spanish civil code, the personal law corresponding to individuals is determined by their nationality. This law will govern the capacity …

Thus, in the case of a British minor or non Capable, it will depend on what the English, ( Scottish, etc. depending on the cases) law says.

Can a minor or incapacitated person sell an inherited property in Spain? .

Yes. But the Spanish Civil Code requires judicial authorization, after hearing the Public Prosecutor, for the sale. In both cases, in a sale from a minors (normally through their parents), and in the case of a disabled person (normally through their deputies or legal guardians).

In this case, as indicated above, in the case of foreign minor or incapacitated (expat), the sale will be governed by his or her national law. Therefore, it can be sold, and a judicial authorization will be necessary or not, depending on what the law of the minor’s nationality says.

In these cases, when there are minors or incapables part of an inheritance or sale, it is essential to know the Spanish regulations, and the corresponding judicial processes. Also, private international law, and applicable regulations. And to know, the best way to prove the national law in an efficient and economical way, so that the transfers could be registered in Spain.

The certificates or affidavits of law are important, which must inform properly about the applicable, for their use in Spain. Determining whether or not judicial authorization will be necessary, the powers of the guardians and the legal representatives, etc.

If you want our advice and professional help, or you are part of an inheritance where there is a  minor or disable heir,  please contact us.


The information provided in this article is not intended to be legal advice, it merely conveys information related to legal issues.

Carlos Baos (Lawyer)

White & Baos.

Tel: +34 966 426 185


White & Baos 2021 – All Rights Reserved.

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