On 11th January 2023 the ICAIB (Balearic college of law) – in collaboration with the IEA – hosted the first seminar on the “new regulation of inheritance agreements in the Balearic Islands”, which we attended together with other lawyers and notaries.

With today’s average life expectancy of 83 years, it is not the same for descendants to receive assets from their parents or grandparents when they are most welcome, i.e. during a person’s stage of economic development, as when they are already enjoying a comfortable retirement.  Law 8/2022 for the Balearic Islands develops the tools that are available to Balearic residents, enabling us to plan our legacies as efficiently as possible.

In this sense, the seminar was exclusively about “definición” or definition, which is a concept applicable in the territories of Mallorca and Menorca.  By means of this, the defined person will relinquish his or her legitimate share (or more, if a broad “definición” is applied), in exchange for assets that the disposing party or testator will part with. The requirement is that the beneficiaries must be direct kin and that they be legitimated, as this law is only applicable for direct descendants. To define one particular offspring does not necessarily imply that other siblings are also defined, as each “definición” is considered to be an individual pact.

This new law introduces two new formulae that are very useful on a practical level:

  1. The possibility of one parent “defining” a child by conveying property belonging to the other parent.
  2. The possibility for a grandparent “defining” a grandchild with the approval of the testator’s child and the parent of the “defined” party.

Moreover, as the agreement is made during the testator’s lifetime, the law allows for several scenarios whereby the “definición” could be retracted:

  1. By mutual dissent
  2. If the “defined” party predeceases the testator, the latter should enforce their right to retract.
  3. By revocation of the agreement due to unworthiness, ingratitude, non-fulfilment of obligations or breach of the relationship between the parties.

If you think you need to plan your inheritance, do not hesitate to contact the professionals at Agote Diez y Abogados so that they can advise you on which tools to use and when is the right time to put them to best use.