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When children don’t behave respectfully

What if your adult child has turned their back on you, is ungrateful, or even hurts you with their behaviour? How can you legally address such a situation? One option is to disinherit the offspring or revoke the gift you have already given him or her. However, it is not that simple. Under what conditions disinheritance or revocation of a gift is possible, you can find out in this article.

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Chapters of the article

Do you know when you can ask your descendant to return the gift, when and how you can disinherit him? And what about inheritance when your descendants don’t care about you, but someone else does on a daily basis? These situations have clearly defined conditions, but they are not easy to meet. Still, your property does not have to be lost for good.

“Give me back my house!”

If you donate something to someone, you have the option under the Civil Code to revoke your gift for two reasons. In the first case, if you find yourself in need and cannot afford to support yourself, you can ask the donor to support you or to return the gift. In the second case, you can revoke the gift if the donor is ungrateful. It does not have to be an ungrateful offspring; the provision applies to any donee.

However, it is not easy to revoke a gift for ingratitude. The donee must have done some harm to the donor, either intentionally or through gross negligence. This could be a physical assault, or perhaps a refusal to help an incapacitated person. The specific circumstances, the value of the gift, and even the behaviour of the donor must always be considered.

Making a will

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The gift can be revoked within one year of the ungrateful act

The law sets a time limit for revoking a gift. You can request the return of the gift within one year from the time when the ungrateful act occurred. If you become aware of the act later, then within one year from the date you became aware of it. The donor’s heirs can also revoke the gift within one year of the donor’s death. If the ungrateful descendant has already managed to sell the gift, for example, he or she must pay the donor the value of the gift. If the donee does not give the gift or the money voluntarily, you can take legal action.

Tip: Read our article to find answers to the most common questions about gift deeds.

Who can you disinherit?

If you did not give the property to your descendant, but you do not want him to receive it after your death, you have the option to disinherit him partially or completely. As with revocation of a gift, there are strict conditions for disinheritance and the descendant must behave in a truly reprehensible manner to be validly disinherited. And who is actually affected by disinheritance? Even if you make a will you cannot legally disinherit your children and if they do not inherit then their descendants. These are the so-called “intestate heirs”. If the non-minor heir is a minor, he must get at least ¾ of his legal share. If your child is over 18, they must get at least ¼ of their legal share of the inheritance.

Therefore, if you were to leave your children less than these shares of the inheritance, the will would not be valid in this section. The exception to this is if you disinherit a child. Then, notwithstanding his or her non-negotiable share, he or she gets nothing.

Tip: Want to decide who inherits from you? To bequeath a specific part of your estate to a specific person? To be sure that your will is actually respected? We will make a will for you according to your requirements. All this within 5 days of ordering the service.

When and how to carry out an eviction

The Civil Code sets out several grounds that entitle you to disinherit an unsuccessful child:

  • the offspring has not provided you with the necessary help in your time of need,
  • the offspring has not shown the genuine interest in you that he or she should,
  • the offspring has been convicted of a crime committed under circumstances indicative of his or her depraved character; or
  • the offspring is leading a permanently disorderly life.

Disinheritance is carried out in the same way as the making of a will.

How to get an unfit descendant out of the apartment?

Other unpleasant situations include those where your adult offspring is still living under the same roof as you, but is not going to work, is being fed by you and, in the worst case, is incurring debts. Sometimes, the child is no longer physically living with the parents, but is a registered resident and the parents are afraid of a visit from the bailiff. What is the way out? If you don’t want your adult child living with you and an arrangement is not enough, we definitely don’t recommend packing your bags and changing the locks. You’ll only add to your problems. You should always go to court. If the child is not a co-tenant or co-owner of the apartment, you can file an eviction action and have them evicted. If the child also has a lease or ownership of the flat, the situation will be more complicated and you will first need to break the joint ownership or joint tenancy.

Once the child is no longer living with you, but has registered permanent residence, you can apply to cancel the permanent residence. You will have to prove that the offspring does not have a right of use of the property and that he/she is not using the property.

Tip: If you are planning to file a lawsuit, let our attorneys help you. We will assess your chances of success in court and suggest a solution that will lead to the desired outcome.

When someone else takes care of the children..

It is also common for someone else to take care of the offspring in old age and illness. And you’d like them to inherit from you. It is always a good idea to remember this in advance and make a will. If you have children and have not made a will (or a valid disinheritance of children), another person will not inherit from you. Such a caring person could inherit only in the second inheritance class (if they have lived in the same household with you for at least a year), together with your spouse and parents, if any.

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Author of the article

JUDr. Ondřej Preuss, Ph.D.

Ondřej is the attorney who came up with the idea of providing legal services online. He's been earning his living through legal services for more than 10 years. He especially likes to help clients who may have given up hope in solving their legal issues at work, for example with real estate transfers or copyright licenses.

Education
  • Law, Ph.D, Pf UK in Prague
  • Law, L’université Nancy-II, Nancy
  • Law, Master’s degree (Mgr.), Pf UK in Prague
  • International Territorial Studies (Bc.), FSV UK in Prague

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