Testamentary Formalities in Italy
TESTAMENTARY FORMALITIES, pp. 120-141, K.G.C. Reid, M.J. De Waal, R. Zimmerman, eds., OPU, 2011
Posted: 11 Feb 2012
Date Written: February 10, 2012
This chapter gives an overview of formality requirements for testamentary dispositions in Italian law, both from a historical and a comparative perspective. Italian inheritance law is deeply rooted in French law and the provisions concerning formalities therefore resemble those of the French Civil Code (as entered in to force in 1804). As well as ordinary wills, including holograph and notarial wills (whether public or secret), the Italian legal system also recognizes a number of special wills as well as international wills. This chapter examines the requirements for each of these different types of will, discusses their popularity and compares their pros and cons. It further outlines the impact of defects of form requirements on the validity of wills and considers the approach of the Italian courts to such defects. Finally, it shows that unlike in some other European countries, in Italy, the number of wills has decreased whilst ‘will-substitutes’ have become more and more popular.
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