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Last update 09-12-2020

Succession or inheritance: Tax rules

Inheritance tax

Inheritance Tax (ISDNR) is levied on capital gains obtained by natural persons through inheritance, bequest or any other form of succession, and on money received by beneficiaries from life insurance, where the policy owner is a person other than the beneficiary.

The types of capital gains described above obtained by legal persons are not subject to this tax.

The tax is also levied on the acquisition of assets and rights by way of gift or any other inter vivos legal transaction for no consideration.

Where a natural person who is not resident in Spain receives an inheritance or a gift, they have to file an Inheritance Tax self-assessment with the Spanish Tax Agency (AEAT).

Where the deceased was non-resident or where immovable property located abroad is received by way of a gift, natural persons resident in Spain also have to file a self-assessment with the AEAT.

Within the AEAT, this tax is managed by the National Tax Management Office (ONGT).

You have to file a different Self-Assessment Form (650, 651 or 655) depending on whether the declaration concerns an inheritance, a gift or the extinction of usufruct.

The National Tax Management Office is responsible for managing the tax where this has not been transferred to any autonomous community. This applies in the following cases:

  • Where the deceased was not resident in Spain at the date of death.
  • Where the person liable to the tax (heir, legatee, beneficiary of life insurance) was not habitually resident in Spain at the date of death.
  • Where the person liable to the tax (the recipient) was not habitually resident in Spain at the date on which they received the gift. Additionally, where the recipient is resident but the assets acquired by way of gift consist of immovable property located abroad.

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Acquisition ‘mortis causa’. Form 650

Who is required to file Form 650?

Form 650 must be filed by heirs, legatees or beneficiaries of life insurance (natural persons) who are not habitually resident in Spain, or by residents acquiring assets or who are beneficiaries of life insurance from a deceased person who was not resident in Spain for tax purposes.

 

How to file the Self-Assessment Form

  • Using a printed form.

    This is done by completing Form 650, which can be downloaded from the Tax Agency’s website ( www.agenciatributaria.es(Abre en nueva ventana) ) following the links: Forms/ Inheritance and Gift Tax (Non-residents).

    The Self-Assessment Form, with the payment already made (if there is anything to pay), must be submitted to the National Tax Management Office (ONGT), Inheritance and Gifts (Non-residents) (Paseo Castellana 147, Planta baja, 28046, Madrid). To do this, you must first request an appointment via the Tax Agency’s website ( www.agenciatributaria.es(Abre en nueva ventana) ), or by calling 901 200 351 / 91 290 13 40.

  • Using the form obtained from the help programme (Pre-declaration)..

    Complete the form that is available from the AEAT’s e-Office. When you have completed it, you have to print out the form plus a cover sheet which gives your filing reference number and instructions on how to submit the form.

    Where the self-assessment shows that tax is payable, once the payment has been made, you have to submit the form to a Spanish Tax Agency office, together with the document or declaration showing or providing evidence of the taxable event, and the documentation referred to in Article 66 of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax.

    In all other cases, the form and the documentation should be submitted directly to a Spanish Tax Agency office.

    When you have filed the self-assessment accompanied by the relevant documentation, in order to comply with Article 87 of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax, you have to submit the original documentation listed in that article to the National Tax Management Office - ONGT (Paseo Castellana 147, Planta baja, 28046, Madrid) for processing and certification. To do this, you must first request an appointment via the Tax Agency’s website ( www.agenciatributaria.es(Abre en nueva ventana) ), or by calling 901 200 351 / 91 290 13 40.

  • Filing the form online.

    By completing and submitting the form available from the e-Office, you will obtain a self-assessment for each person liable to the tax. You also have to submit the document or declaration showing or providing evidence of the taxable event giving rise to the tax and the documentation referred to in Article 66 of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax.

    In this way, you will receive the certification referred to in Article 87a of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax online, without having to go to the National Tax Management Office [ONGT] in person.

 

Documentation to be provided

Mandatory documentation:

  • The original and an uncertified copy of the Deed of Acceptance of Inheritance.
  • Failing that, two copies of the Inventory of Assets and Heirs, giving the personal details of the deceased and the heirs, providing an address for the service of notifications, a detailed list of the assets and rights forming part of the inheritance, stating their value at the date of death, and the charges, debts and expenditure that you wish to have deducted.
  • A copy of the Death Certificate.
  • A copy of the Certificate from the Central Registry of Last Wills.
  • A copy of the Will or the Inheritance certificate.
  • Persons liable to the tax who are non-resident must appoint a tax representative in Spain. To do this, they may use the representative appointment form for proceedings initiated by taxable persons which can be found on the Tax Agency’s website: ( www.agenciatributaria.es(Abre en nueva ventana) ) / Forms /Representative Appointment Forms /) which must be submitted together with the Self-Assessment (NOT A PHOTOCOPY).

Other documentation to be submitted, where appropriate:

  • A copy of the IBI (Immovable Property Tax) receipt, and the title deeds for the immovable property or, failing that, an Uncertified Registration Annotation.
  • A copy of the insurance policies, or a certificate from the insurance company.
  • A certificate from the bank showing the balances on accounts and/or the securities deposited with the bank at the date of death.
  • Documentary evidence for any charges, fees, debts and expenditure that may be deductible, and also documentary evidence of the age of the heirs.
  • A copy of the passport, identity document or the Non-national Identification Number (NIE) certificate of the heirs and the tax representative in Spain.
  • A copy of the documentation for vehicles forming part of the inheritance (technical inspection certificate, vehicle registration document).

NB:

If the documents were issued by officials or authorities in another country, they must bear a Hague Convention Apostille and be accompanied by a sworn translation.

If you have a European Certificate of Succession (Regulation (EU) No 650/2012), attesting that you are an heir or legatee, you may submit a certified true copy of it instead of the death certificate and the Will or an inheritance certificate. If the European Certificate of Succession is in a language other than Spanish, it must be accompanied by a translation.

 

Filing deadlines

For acquisition ‘mortis causa’, including for beneficiaries under life insurance policies, the deadline for filing the declaration is six months from the date of death.

 

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Table showing division of responsibilities and applicable legislation: state/ autonomous communities (AC) under the common tax system

INHERITANCE Taxable event Art. 3. a) and c) Law 29/1987 on Inheritance and Gift Tax
(Acquisition of assets and rights by inheritance, bequest or other form of succession)
DECEASED HEIR (person liable to the tax) RESPONSIBILITY LEGISLATION
RESIDENT RESIDENT Deceased’s AC of residence Deceased’s AC of residence
RESIDENT NON-RESIDENT STATE Option:
STATE
Deceased’s AC of residence
NON-RESIDENT RESIDENT STATE Option:
STATE
The AC with the major proportion of the assets located in Spain in terms of value, and if there are no assets in Spain, the AC of residence
NON-RESIDENT NON-RESIDENT STATE Option:
STATE
The AC with the major proportion of the assets located in Spain in terms of value
LIFE INSURANCE Taxable event Art. 3. c) Law 29/1987 on Inheritance and Gift Tax
(Receipt of monies by beneficiaries of life insurance)

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Consolidation of ownership due to extinction of usufruct. Form 655

Who is required to file the form?

Legal owners who are consolidating ownership as a result of the extinction of usufruct.

 

How to file the Self-Assessment Form

  • In printed form.

    This is done by completing Form 655, downloaded from the Tax Agency’s website ( www.agenciatributaria.es(Abre en nueva ventana) ) following the links: Forms/ Inheritance and Gift Tax (Non-residents).

    The Self-Assessment Form, with the payment already made (if there is anything to pay), must be submitted to the National Tax Management Office (ONGT), Inheritance and Gifts (Non-residents) (Paseo Castellana 147, Planta baja, 28046, Madrid). To do this, you must first request an appointment via the Tax Agency’s website ( www.agenciatributaria.es(Abre en nueva ventana) ), or by calling 901 200 351 / 91 290 13 40.

  • Using the form obtained from the help programme (Pre-declaration).

    Complete the form that can be obtained from the AEAT’s e-Office. When you have completed it, you have to print out the form plus a cover sheet which contains your filing reference number and instructions on how to submit the form.

    Where the self-assessment shows that tax is payable, and once the payment has been made, you have to submit the form to a Spanish Tax Agency office, together with the document or declaration showing or providing evidence of the taxable event and the documentation referred to in Article 66 of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax.

    In all other cases, the form and the documentation should be submitted directly to a Spanish Tax Agency office.

    When you have filed the self-assessment accompanied by the relevant documentation, in order to comply with Article 87 of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax, you have to submit the original documentation listed in that article to the National Tax Management Office - ONGT (Paseo Castellana 147, Planta baja, 28046, Madrid) for processing and certification. To do this, you must first request an appointment via the Tax Agency’s website ( www.agenciatributaria.es(Abre en nueva ventana) ), or by calling 901 200 351 / 91 290 13 40.

  • Filing the form online.

    Complete and submit the form available from the e-Office, which will provide a self-assessment for each person liable to the tax. You also have to submit the document or declaration showing or providing evidence of the taxable event giving rise to the tax and the documentation referred to in Article 66 of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax.

    In this case, you will receive the certification referred to in Article 87a of the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax online, without having to go to the ONGT in person.

 

Documentation to be provided

  • The original and an uncertified copy of the notarial document providing evidence of consolidation of ownership in the person of the first or subsequent legal owners.
  • Failing that, two copies of the document recording the extinction of the usufruct and the resulting consolidation of ownership, which must give the personal details of the usufructuary and the legal owner (name, ID [NIF] and full address), an address for the service of notifications and a detailed list of the assets and rights that have been consolidated.
  • The usufructuary’s death certificate or, where ownership has been consolidated for other reasons, documentation providing evidence of the reason for consolidation.
  • You must provide a copy of the identity document, passport or the Non-national Identification Number (NIE) certificate of the person liable for tax (the legal owner).
  • A power of attorney (mandatory in the case of non-resident persons liable to the tax, Art. 47 of General Tax Law 58/2003 and Article 18(4) of RD 1629/1991 approving the Regulation on Inheritance and Gift Tax). To do this, you can use the representative appointment form which can be found on the Tax Agency’s website: Representative Appointment Form for proceedings initiated by taxable persons, accompanied by a photocopy of the grantor’s National Identity Document [DNI] or passport and the representative’s National Identity Document.

NB:

If the documents were issued by officials or authorities in another country, they must bear a Hague Convention Apostille and be accompanied by a sworn translation.

 

Filing deadlines

If the usufruct was extinguished due to the death of the usufructuary, the deadline for filing the self-assessment is six months, commencing from the date of death.

In all other cases, the deadline is thirty working days, commencing from the day after the usufruct was extinguished.

 

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Authority responsible for the information

Ministry of Finance
State Tax Administration Agency
The National Tax Management Office