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PRACTICE AREAS

AMERICAN-GERMAN

  • PROBATE LAW, ESTATE LAW, TRUST LAW, WILLS
     
  • ESTATE AND GIFT TAX LAW, INCL. CRIMINAL TAX FRAUD LAW

BASED ON DOUBLE BAR ADMISSION BOTH IN GERMANY AND IN THE U.S.


 

Typical cases handled by Dr. Barandt, Esq., in his more than 25 years of professional experience in American German legal matters as an attorney holding bar admissions on both sides of the Atlantic include

  • Executor and proxy services in Germany for American estates and trusts with German assets and / or distributions to German heirs, beneficiaries, and donees
  • Administration and liquidation of American estates and trusts in Germany with German assets and liabilities
  • German estate, inheritance, and gift tax compliance work (“Erbschaftsteuererklärung”, “Schenkungsteuererklärung”) for American estates, heirs, beneficiaries, trusts, donors, and donees
  • Fending off claims against U.S. estates, heirs, beneficiaries, and trusts by German tax authorities for undue payment of German estate, inheritance, and gift tax (“Erbschaftsteuer und Schenkungsteuer”)
  • Criminal defense of U.S. personal representatives (executors of estate, administrators of estate), U.S. heirs, U.S. beneficiaries, U.S. trustees, U.S. donors, and U.S. donees against charges brought by German government (C.I.D., D.A.) (“Steuerfahndung”, “Staatsanwaltschaft”) for late filing, incorrect filing or non-filing of German estate, inheritance, and gift tax returns
  • Representing U.S. personal representatives (executors of estate, administrators of estate), U.S. heirs, U.S. beneficiaries, and U.S. trustees vis-a-vis German probate courts (“Nachlassgericht”) and German tax authorities (“Finanzamt”)
  • Obtaining German Certificates of Heirship / Heirship Certificates (“Erbschein”) for American heirs and (estate or trust) beneficiaries from German probate courts (“Nachlassgericht”)
  • Obtaining German Letters Testamentary (“Testamentsvollstreckerzeugnis”) for U.S. executors of estate from German probate courts (“Nachlassgericht”)
  • Obtaining German recognition of U.S. wills and (pour over) trust agreements from German probate courts
  • Obtaining tax clearance and release certificates (“Unbedenklichkeitsbescheinigung”) for German assets to U.S. heirs and beneficiaries from German tax authorities (“Finanzamt”)
  • Rendering legal advice to U.S. heirs, U.S. beneficiaries, U.S. personal representatives (executors of estate, administrators of estate), and U.S. trustees in matters of American will contests involving German wills
  • Legal representation of U.S. heirs, U.S. beneficiaries, U.S. personal representatives (executors of estate, administrators of estate), and U.S. trustees in German will contests (“Testamentsanfechtung”) involving American and German wills
  • Legal representation of U.S. heirs, U.S. beneficiaries, U.S. personal representatives (executors of estate, administrators of estate), and U.S. trustees vis-a-vis German banks, German insurance companies, and German financial institutions in matters of German payables on death (cash deposits or securities accounts) due to U.S. citizens, U.S. residents and / or U.S. entities
  • Protection against unsubstantiated claims and charges by German tax authorities (“Finanzamt”) , German criminal prosecution authorities (“Staatsanwaltschaft”), German law enforcement authorities (“Steuerfahndung”), and by potential German beneficiaries (“Erbprätendent”) of a German last domicile, a German tax residence, a German permanent home and / or a German center of vital interests of decedent in Germany, particularly in cases of prior dual residences (“Doppelwohnsitz”) of decedent both in the U.S. and in Germany
  • Preparation and filing of German gift tax returns (“Schenkungsteuererklärung”) for gifts made by German donors to American donees and vice versa
  • Structuring and timing of distributions from U.S. trusts by U.S. trustees to German beneficiaries and residents for purposes of legal minimization of German estate, inheritance, and gift tax burden
  • Legal representation of U.S. personal representatives (executors of estate, administrators of estate), U.S. trustees, U.S. donors, and U.S. donees vis-a-vis German tax authorities (“Finanzamt”) for recognition of payments of U.S. estate taxes (federal and state) in Germany and deduction of such payments from German estate, inheritance, and gift tax burden
  • Legal representation of U.S. personal representatives (executors of estate, administrators of estate), U.S. trustees, U.S. donors, and U.S. donees vis-a-vis German tax authorities (“Finanzamt”) for recognition of payments of U.S. gift taxes (federal and state) in Germany and deduction of such payments from German gift tax burden
  • Differentiation of German estate, inheritance, and gift tax liability from German income tax liability in cases of distributions made to Germany from American estates and trusts