Situation of The Surviving Spouse on Inheritance in Turkey
The surviving spouse is not the cognate of the inheritor, however they are heirs of the inheritor with the other heir presumptive. The spouse can be an inheritor with all groups of heirs. The spouse’s share of inheritance in Turkish Law is determined according to the group in which the inheritance is in question. Also in determining the inheritance of each group, if there is a surviving spouse, their inheritance share is taken into consideration.
The condition for the surviving spouse to be an inheritor is that the marriage union to be continued when the inheritor died. The inheritance share is one fourth of the whole inheritance when the spouse becomes an inheritor with the lower lineage. The spouse will receive half of the total inheritance if the spouse is being an heir with upper descendants of the inheritor. The spouse receives three-fourths of the total inheritance if the inheritance of the grandparents of the inheritor is concerned. The entire inheritance is left to the surviving spouse if the grandparents of inheritor are not alive either.
The inheritance status of the surviving spouse shows a characteristic feature if only the cousins of the inheritor are alive. Only the spouse will get a share from the inheritance if only the inheritor’s cousins are alive. This is a rule criticized in the doctrine. Because although the cousins of the inheritance are also blood relatives, the law eliminates this situation.
In summary, the conditions of the surviving spouse’s inheritance are : A marriage contract must be established and continued when the inheritor died(the imam marriage is not included), If a lawsuit has been filed such as divorce or marriage before death any of these cases must not have been concluded at the time of death. Divorced spouses cannot fall heir to each other. Also they lose the rights they have earned from a testimony disposition, unless it is understood from these dispositions such as wills or inheritance agreements in Turkish Law. Antalya Lawyer and Antalya Attorney Baris Erkan Celebi and his Antalya Law Firm offer their clients legal support in all inheritance disputes in Turkey.
The Turkish Civil Code allows the heirs to continue the divorce proceedings if there is a petition for divorce that has not yet been concluded at the time of the death of the inheritor. The inheritance of the surviving spouse and the testimony dispositions made in favor of the spouse in the health of the inheritance will also end if the heirs prove the fault of the spouse who is a party to the divorce suit.