The Swiss Federal Council has announced that significant amendments to inheritance law will enter into force on 1 January 2023.
The reforms will substantially alter Switzerland's forced-heirship laws. They will reduce descendants' statutory entitlement (réserve légale) from three quarters to half the estate and abolish the parents' statutory entitlement entirely. Statutory entitlement of the surviving spouse and registered partner is maintained at half of their succession right.
The right to dispose where there is a usufruct in favour of the surviving spouse or registered partner is increased from one quarter to half of the estate. A testator will thus be able to grant a surviving spouse or partner half the estate in full ownership and the usufruct on the other half.
Further legislative measures to remove some existing obstacles to the transfer of a business by succession are also under consideration. The Federal Council is expected to table the relevant Bill in parliament later this year, along with revisions to the Private International Law Act to reduce the risk of conflicts of jurisdiction and conflicting decisions with other EU Member States.
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