Settling Estates in Israel
Receiving an Israeli probate order
The most important thing to know when it comes to settling estate rights in Israel, is that whether the deceased passed away in Israel or abroad, an Israeli probate order is required in order to complete any transfer of rights in the estate - be it rights in land (real property) or be it rights in funds held in an Israeli bank account or other tangible rights.
The Israeli probate order is awarded either by the Israeli Inheritance registrar or by the relevant family court.
The process of receiving an Israeli probate order can take approximately three months when the deceased was an Israeli citizen who passed away in Israel and pending there are no objections submitted to the request.
However, when the deceased passed away abroad as a resident of a foreign country the process can take significantly longer. This is due to the extra requirements and documents that must be fulfilled and submitted to the authorities as part of the process.
For example, all documents that are official public documents and that are required to prove the identity of the deceased and the content of the estate such as the copy of the death certificate or the copy of the deceased's will must be notarized and stamped with an "Apostille" stamp. This requirement within itself can take some time to complete.
Another example in the case of a deceased who passed away abroad is the requirement to supply the Israeli authorities with a legal opinion addressing the local legal status applying to the estate in the jurisdiction where the deceased resided.
Furthermore, the request for the Israeli probate order must be signed in person by one of the heirs before an Israeli attorney or before the Israeli consul who certify the Heir's identity.
As can be concluded from the above, fulfilling the different requirements for receiving the Israeli probate order involves an investment of time and money. Therefore, receiving the guidelines for preparation of all required forms and documents in advance and the correct preparation of these documents can save you both time and money in the process.
Our firm has extensive experience assisting foreigners in receiving Israeli probate orders and settling estates in Israel. You are welcome to contact us and we will be happy to provide you with further information and assistance.