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What is an act of notoriety?

The deed of notoriety is the name given to the deed drawn up by a notary as part of the settlement of an estate. It makes it possible to identify the heirs, to specify their degree of kinship with the deceased and to determine their rights in the succession.

The establishment of an affidavit is mandatory for all inheritances over 5,000 euros. Only notaries are authorized to draw up deeds of notoriety

What is an act of notoriety used for?

The purpose of the affidavit is to prove the legal status of the heirs, as well as to mention the last wishes of the deceased. Following a death, this act must be provided, for example, to the bank of the deceased to release the sums held in the bank account if they are greater than 5,000 euros, to his life insurance company or to the prefecture to request the change of registration document of the deceased person. The heirs or beneficiaries of the deceased must indeed prove their rights in the succession to all these bodies. The affidavit is also required by the authorities when applying for a survivor's pension or a widowhood allowance.

Once the deed of notoriety has been drawn up by the notary, it becomes "indisputable and opposable to all", that is to say that it has the character of preventing other people from seizing the legal quality that the act of notoriety gives to the heirs.

The notary sends a certificate of notarial deed to the civil status service of the town hall of the place of death.

How to obtain a notoriety certificate?

The affidavit can be requested by one or all of the heirs of the deceased after having presented the death certificate to the notary. In order to draft the notarial deed, the notary must have certain elements such as, among others, birth certificates, family booklets and identity documents of the persons so that they are identified (or not) as heirs. .

To draw up an affidavit, the notary must have all the useful information on all the heirs of the deceased person. In the absence of sufficient elements, he may refuse to draw up this act.

The content of the affidavit

The affidavit contains the following information:

  • the identity of the deceased
  • the existence or not of special provisions concerning inheritance such as a will or a gift between spouses
  • the parentage and degree of relationship of each heir to the deceased
  • the share going to each of the heirs

The deed of notoriety also contains the signed agreement of the heirs to collect the estate of the deceased. The identified heir(s) may indeed waive their legal rights in the context of an inheritance.

The notary keeps the original of the notarial deed and issues copies, which have the same legal value as the original, to the applicants. The affidavit must be mentioned on the death certificate.

How much does an act of notoriety cost?

The establishment of an act of notoriety is set at 69.23 euros including tax. But its total cost includes the emoluments of the notary, the registration costs of the deed, the formalities and the cost of the copies. It is therefore necessary to count on a total cost of 250 euros to obtain an act of notoriety. (rates in effect in November 2017)