Are there inheritance taxes? Does the Turkish differ from the foreigner in the value of the tax?

Is the property inherited in ...

Date:Thursday, January 12, 2023

Are there inheritance taxes? Does the Turkish differ from the foreigner in the value of the tax?

Is the property inherited in Turkey?

Those wishing to own and invest in real estate in Turkey raise their inquiries about inheritance in Turkey. Is there inheritance for real estate and are there inheritance taxes? Does the Turkish differ from the foreigner in the value of the tax?

And a lot of questions that concern every investor about the legacy of real estate in Turkey

In this article, you will find a comprehensive guide and clarification of all the matters that are still unknown to some investors, as the Turkish inheritance law guarantees you the preservation of your property.

First, what is the inheritance of real estate in Turkey?

It is the transfer of ownership of the property from the real owner after his death to his legal heirs, males and females, according to specific laws, whereby any foreigner has the right to distribute his estate in Turkey to his children and legal heirs.

The principle of foreigners bequeathing real estate in Turkey

In general, Turkey adopts the principle of "the location of the property" to determine the method of inheriting any property of a foreign person. The principle of the site states that the method in which the legal distribution of the estate and inheritance takes place is the law of the country in which you reside, that is, the law of succession in Turkey.

However, there are some exceptional cases related to the laws of real estate inheritance in Turkey, and the following is an arrangement of the method of inheritance according to Turkish law:

- When requesting a limitation of inheritance in Turkey, the laws of real estate inheritance in force in Turkey are applied.

- If one of the legal heirs objects to the method of distributing the inheritance, he is entitled to submit a request to limit the inheritance according to the laws of the country of the deceased owner's nationality, and not according to the inheritance laws in Turkey.

- The laws of limitation of inheritance are adopted after making sure that there is no will officially certified by one of the Notary offices in Turkey, the "Notary Clerk".

Who are the heirs of the property in Turkish law?

Turkish law states that the following heirs are mentioned, and they are:

Children and husband or wife:

The inheritance is distributed equally among them

the parents:

In the case that the deceased property owner does not have children, his parents have a share of the inheritance, in addition to the share of the husband or wife, and in the event that the parents are not alive, the grandfather can inherit a share of the property.

brothers and sisters:

In the absence of children and parents, the brothers and sisters have the right to inherit a share of the inheritance of real estate in Turkey

Grandchildren and their children:

In the absence of immediate relatives "sons, parents and brothers", the grandchildren and their children have a right to inherit the property. Grandchildren and their children come last in the order of relatives' entitlement to inheritance according to the laws in force in Turkey.

In the case that there are relatives from the sons, parents, brothers or grandchildren, they share the inheritance with the husband or wife, but in the event that they are not alive, the inheritance is entirely up to the husband or wife.

In the case that there are absolutely no legal heirs alive, the ownership of the property is seized by the Turkish government.

When can one of the heirs be withheld from his right of inheritance?

An application can be submitted to the court in Turkey to prevent one of the heirs from obtaining his share of the inheritance from the property, but this does not happen except in specific and special cases.

Whoever submits this request must explain before the court in Turkey the reasons that justify his request to prevent one of the heirs from obtaining his share.

Inheritance tax levied on inheritance and transfer of ownership:

Foreigners are subject to the inheritance and transfer tax law in the event that the inherited or transferred funds exist within the borders of the Turkish Republic, whether the heir lives inside or outside Turkey, in the event that he obtains funds through inheritance or transfer without consideration.

But compared to other countries in the European Union, the value of the inheritance tax in Turkey is relatively low and varies depending on the value of the investor's property, as a lower percentage tax is deducted the lower the property price.

The inheritance tax rate varies between 1% to 10%, depending on the residency status of the heir and the geographical location of the property.

Documents required to transfer property ownership to heirs in Turkey

Submission of the following papers to each of the heirs in order for the ownership to be transferred:

1- A family statement “inheritance inventory” showing the heirs and the kinship relationship, certified and translated into Turkish.

2- Register in the tax registry in Turkey and obtain tax numbers.

3- Having a valid passport.

4- Submit personal photos.

The will in Turkey

As is the case in many countries of the world, anyone in Turkey can write a will in which he clarifies who wishes to leave his property after his death, and the competent courts in this regard consider the person's will after his death.

The Turkish Civil Law clearly shows how to deal with the will for foreigners, the will must be prepared in accordance with the provisions of Turkish law in this regard, in order for it to be legally recognized.

The conditions stipulated by Turkish law regarding the writing of a will, are:

- The person must be over fifteen years of age and in full possession of his mental faculties.
- The will must also be written in the handwriting of its owner, and the date must be mentioned in detail in the day, month and year, and must be appended to his signature.
- The person concerned must submit the will either to the court or to the notary, signed in front of two witnesses, so that the procedures can proceed properly.
- In this regard, the Magistrate’s Court or the Court of First Instance considers cases related to inheritance, and each case may require a different time from the other, depending on the complexity of the case and the workflow of the court itself.

What about the fact that Turkey confiscates the real estate of foreigners in the country?

It is known to everyone that the law on foreign ownership of Turkish real estate issued in May of the year 2021 allowed foreigners to own real estate on Turkish lands, regardless of the law dealing with this ideal. 

-Syrian Arab Republic.


Greek Cyprus.

-North Korea.

- Cuba.

This is due to many reasons, most notably political differences. For Syrian nationals, there is an old law issued in 1927 after the Syrian government at that time seized control of the property of the Turks and the Ottomans in Syria as a result of the transfer of the rule of Iskenderun and Hatay from Syria to Turkey according to international agreements.

Which prompted the Turkish government to respond to the Syrian decision not to allow citizens to sell Turkish real estate, and despite a Turkish parliamentary decision in 2012 allowing foreigners to own Turkish real estate regardless of the reciprocity law, it excluded the Syrians from this matter due to new disputes that erupted between the Syrian regime and the state Turkey since the beginning of the Syrian revolution on March 15, 2011.

But some of the Syrians who have acquired another nationality and are called "dual nationals" are entitled to own real estate in Turkey based on the acquired nationality and not the mother's (Syrian) nationality. Among the nationalities that Syrian citizens have acquired in recent years are "Swedish, German, Turkish ( Exceptional citizenship or Turkish origins).

The second nationality holders of Syrians who own Turkish real estate will never be affected by this old decision in the first place, but the Turkish authorities have recalled it, as this category can buy and sell real estate in Turkey and bequeath it in the event of death without any legal obstacles.

But the Turkish decision states the following:

In the case that a Syrian citizen owns Turkish real estate according to the other nationality granted to him by one of the nationalities that Turkey allows its holders to own in the country, then the Syrian owner after a while relinquishes his acquired nationality of his own free will, he will have only his mother nationality (Syrian) and this nationality is originally not It allows him to own real estate in Turkey, so his real estate that he purchased mainly on the second citizenship has lost its legal legitimacy because the other citizenship has been waived.
Therefore, the Turkish authorities, during the process of transferring real estate ownership from the old owner to the new owner (the Syrian with dual citizenship), inform him that he owns on the basis of the second citizenship, and as soon as it is abandoned or withdrawn from him by the state that granted it to him, he loses the right to own real estate in Turkey.
But we should not be afraid of this decision, which is nothing more than a reminder, inform and inform of the laws in force and old.
There is nothing new in this decision except ((concluding an undertaking with the Turkish Land Registry or the Turkish Notor by the Syrian citizen with dual citizenship to give up his purchased real estate in Turkey by simply relinquishing the other nationality that authorized him to own real estate in Turkey)).
As for the rest of the Arab and foreign nationalities (with the exception of citizens of Cuba, North Korea, Armenia, and Greek Cyprus), their real estate in Turkey will not be affected by this decision, neither from near nor from afar.

The following is the text of the pledge that Syrian citizens who hold another nationality must allow them to own real estate in Turkey:

Since I hold Syrian citizenship at the same time, the state has the right to seize my property according to Law 1062
The contents of the provisions of Law 1062 are as follows:
● A Syrian who has obtained Turkish citizenship, in the event of revocation of citizenship, has the right to the state treasury to own his property.
● A Syrian who holds Turkish citizenship in the event of his death cannot bequeath his Syrian relatives unless they also hold Turkish citizenship.
● A Syrian who holds Turkish citizenship in the event of his death and has no heirs, the Turkish state has the right to seize all of his property.
● The Syrian who obtained Turkish citizenship in the event of his death and has only Syrian relatives who are not Turks, the state has the right to sell his property and give its value to the Syrian heirs.
● The Syrian who holds Turkish citizenship, in the event of selling his property to a Syrian who holds Turkish citizenship, must obtain the approval of Şehircilik ve çevre müdürlüğü Department of Urbanism and Environment from Ankara, but if the property is sold to a Turkish citizen, he does not need that approval.
After that, the person wishing to own real estate in Turkey of the aforementioned category must sign the pledge, and Law 1062 is considered an effective law.

Contact us at FCC Real Estate, as we keep in constant contact with our clients to provide them with all real estate developments in Istanbul and all investment cities, in addition to the new laws issued by the Turkish government.

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