June 06, 2024

Everything You Need to Know About Probate Hearing in Croatia


A probate hearing is a legal process that is carried out after a person’s death to determine who their heirs are, what assets make up the estate and how these assets are distributed among the heirs. In the Republic of Croatia, probate proceedings are regulated by the Inheritance Act. The process begins with the death of the testator and may involve several legal steps that ensure that the estate is properly distributed to the legal heirs or to the testator’s will.

The course of the probate hearing

  1. Initiation of probate proceedings: Probate proceedings are initiated by the competent municipal court in whose jurisdiction the deceased was domiciled at the time of death. The procedure begins when the court receives the death certificate, which the registrar serves on the court, or when the court becomes aware of the person’s death in another way.
  1. Preliminary actions: Before the hearing itself, the court may carry out certain actions such as drawing up a list of the testator’s assets and securing the estate. This includes submitting the will to the court, promulgating the will, and setting up interim measures to secure property if necessary.
  1. Summons to a hearing: The court sets a hearing for the probate hearing and summons all interested persons, including heirs, clerks, and potential creditors. The summons informs them of the initiation of the proceedings and asks for the service of the will, if any.
  1. Probate Hearing: The hearing discusses all issues relevant to the decision in the probate proceedings, including inheritance rights, the size of the portion of the inheritance, and rights to records. Interested persons may make statements about their rights, and the court may refer the parties to litigation if the disputed facts are relevant to the decision on the succession.
  1. Declaration of succession: Any person claiming an inheritance can make a declaration of succession, declaring whether he accepts or renounces the succession. If a person does not make a statement, they are considered to be accepting the inheritance.

Decision on inheritance

After all relevant facts have been established and any legal ambiguities have been resolved, the court will issue a decision on succession. The decision must contain a list of the heirs, the size of their inheritance shares and any records or encumbrances borne by the estate.

  1. Delivery of the decision and entries in the land register: The decision is delivered to all interested persons, and the registration of ownership rights to real estate in the land register is carried out on the basis of that decision.
  1. Implementation of the decision: After the decision becomes final, the heirs acquire the right to dispose of the inherited property. If additional assets or wills are found after the decision has become final, an additional procedure is carried out to include these assets in the decision already issued.


Probate hearing is a complex legal process that requires a thorough knowledge of the laws and procedures. Engaging legal aid in a timely manner can ensure that all steps are carried out in accordance with the law and that the rights of all heirs are respected.


This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. For specific legal advice related to probate proceedings, please contact us at:


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