Carlo Pontei, Founder of The Italian Inheritance, is an Italian Avvocato expert in cross border probate matters, inheritance taxes and estate planning.

Q.: Hi Carlo, how did you come to launch The Italian Inheritance?

A.: Before launching this new exiting project, I worked for many years in an international practice between Milan and London. During this time, I assisted several international clients who required assistance with the Italian side of the probate. At the time, approximately three years ago, there were only a few lawyers able to advise in high value and complex cross border matters, so I recognised this as a gap in the market to be covered.

Q.: What is the added value that The Italian Inheritance can provide to its clients?

A.: I strongly believe that The Italian Inheritance can cover part of this existing gap and provide bespoke advice to our clients. I have noticed that when speaking with other professionals for other jurisdictions, it’s sometimes difficult for them to understand how the Italian probate works. We provide our clients with dedicated advice so that they are fully aware and familiar with the process, which is on certain occasions, very different from the standard procedure into comparison to the legal features that need to be undertaken in their home country.

At The Italian Inheritance we believe that communication with our clients is key and therefore we guide them throughout the process step by step.

Q.: You mentioned before that you have assisted international clients: can you tell us more about them?

A.: Of course! As I mentioned before I have assisted clients from all over the world. Because of my connection with the UK, a vast majority of the clients were English. However, I have also worked with clients across the globe, including American, Canadian and Australian.

On some occasions, the matters were straightforward and therefore it was possible to complete the Italian succession procedure in a reasonable period of time.

In some other situations, especially when a considerable number off heirs were involved, or there were disputes among the beneficiaries with regards to how to divide the estate, matters were more complex and therefore required a little more time to be brought to an end.

Q.: What is The Italian Inheritance’s approach when you come across an Italian contested probate matter and the beneficiaries do not find a compromise or an agreement?

A.: When we are in front of these situations, we always bring to our clients’ attention what they are entitled to in line with Italian law or according to the existing last Will and Testament (if any). I am also a mediator and therefore am familiar with this type of proceedings.

We like our clients to be aware of their rights and entitlements, but it’s also important for them to be aware of any risks and weaknesses of the case. All this has one purpose only: inform our clients so that they can make an informed decision as to how to take the matter forward.

In most cases we are able to advise our clients to try to find an amicable agreement with the parties involved in order to achieve swift, smooth and, most importantly, a cost effective resolution of their case.

Mediation is a very good tool to resolve these issues. Furthermore, it should also be stated that was pursuant to Italian law, any disputes arised from the division of an estate shall be first addressed via mediation; an independent mediator will assist the parties throughout the process in order to try to settle the matter amicably and in a cost efficient way. I’d love to talk to you again about Alternative Dispute Resolutions another time!

Q.: Are there any other areas of expertise where you can assist your clients?

A.: Indeed! At The Italian Inheritance we can assist clients in respect of any other matter in Italy. Our full range of services includes providing assistance in respect of real estate matters -either when purchasing or selling-, due diligence services, dormant funds, international divorces, and immigration matters.

I would also like to add that The Italian Inheritance works with corporate businesses around the world with call right immigration services and, in conjunction with our partners, company formation services.

For more information about legal assistance in Italy you can contact Carlo on info@theitalianinheritance.com or on (+39) 02 3663 8610. Alternatively, you can find more information on www.theitalianinheritance.com