How to Find Out About Debts of a Testator in Russia and Not Fall Into a Debt Trap

There is no inheritance, but there is debt. One girl in Russia got into such an absurd situation. She learned of her uncle's death. There were no other heirs. She wrote an application for acceptance of the inheritance from a notary. Only later it turned out that the testator did not have property, but his uncle had debts.

It would seem, what is terrible here. After all, the heir is responsible for the debts of the testator within the value of the inherited property (Article 1175 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation). In other words, no inheritance - no debt. In practice, everything turned out to be much more complicated. The bailiff and the creditor began to collect the debt from the girl's salary. The case went to court.

Before accepting an inheritance, learn about debts

Indeed, it is quite possible that the debts cover the value of the testator's property. Then there is no point in accepting the inheritance. Besides, you can get into an unpleasant situation, like that girl.
The dream of inheriting and becoming a wealthy person may have the other side of the coin.

The presence of debts will be checked by a notary

Modern technology provides a tremendous opportunity. Today, a notary can make inquiries with credit organizations to find out whether they have bank accounts, safe deposit boxes, metal accounts, and so on. Interestingly, in 2020, notaries, together with one of the largest banks in Russia, tested the possibility of receiving the testator's money by his heirs, as well as the ability to find the testator's money in the bank online.

At the same time, the notary has the possibility of the testator's debt obligations. Moreover, it is possible to find out the size of the debt burden. Based on this information, the heir can already decide on the inheritance.
How else can you find out about the debts of the testator

In fact, today the primary information about debt obligations is kept in the public domain.

Card file of cases in the Arbitration Court on the bankruptcy of an individual. You can go to the website of the Regional Arbitration Court and type the name of the deceased. If there is a bankruptcy case, it will be in the case file. It is noteworthy that even if a person started the bankruptcy procedure, in the event of his death, the case does not stop, because there are his heirs.

Card file of cases in a court of general jurisdiction. It's a little more complicated here. You can find out the magistrate's court and the district court of the testator at his address. Then, in the section on court proceedings, you can find out about the presence / absence of court cases with the testator.

Site of bailiffs-executors. If enforcement proceedings were initiated against the testator, then on the website of bailiffs in the search for debtors section, you can get this information.

Pledged car or real estate. On the website of the Federal Notary Chamber in the section of the register of pledges on movable property. As for real estate, you can make online inquiries for a statement for a specific property.

The main disadvantage of all the above methods

The testator could also be a bona fide borrower. He paid current payments on time. The bank had no complaints. Consequently, the heirs do not know about the debt. In this case, the notary will help you.
It's not all bad

Do not forget to inquire about the availability of bank loan insurance. Death is one of the main cases for obtaining loan insurance. Then you can safely accept the inheritance, since the insurance company will pay the debts.

By Ivan Kuznetsov, Russia
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ivan Kuznetsov
Ivan Kuznetsov received several higher educations in Russia. Among them are legal and economic education. His general legal experience is 12 years. He is a licensed professional lawyer. The main area of his practice is the protection of foreigners and foreign legal entities in Russia. Speaks English, Russian.

Copyright Ivan Kuznetsov

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication at the time it was written. It is not intended to provide legal advice or suggest a guaranteed outcome as individual situations will differ and the law may have changed since publication. Readers considering legal action should consult with an experienced lawyer to understand current laws they may affect a case. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

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