Greece has had some turbulent times economically over the last few years but has remained a popular holiday destination for British people and as such has remained a popular place for people to buy property, go to live, retie in or start a business
Greece as a country
Greece (the Hellenic Republic) is a country in Southern Europe and is part of the EU. The majority of Greece is part of mainland Europe but it is also composed of many islands. In fact Greece has some 6,000 islands of which 227 are inhabited. Greece also has the longest coastline in the Mediterranean and the 11th longest coastline in the world. The national language is Greek
Greece is often considered to be where western civilisation started and as being the birthplace of democracy. Greek law has had an influence on many countries throughout the world. Greece is also part of the EU and has therefore had to adopt EU Directives and its own National law. Having said that, Greek law can be considerably different from British law and even those elements based on EU Directives may have been introduced in a different way. Therefore if you are doing something in Greece you will need a lawyer who is proficient in Greek law to assist you with this rather than using your British solicitor or, worst still, trying to do it yourself.
How we work with Greece
We work closely with our team in Greece to provide a service that has been specially designed for the needs of British people with legal requirements in Greece. Your contact is with our office in the UK. You will speak English and interact with a UK registered law firm. We will then work with our colleagues in Greece, meaning that you get the benefit of using a British firm of Solicitors and also having Greek lawyers on the ground at no extra cost.
Because we are a UK based firm of Solicitors dealing with Greece we can explain things in terms that you understand and also assist you in understanding the interaction between the two sets of laws, which is of importance when it comes to things like inheritance, Wills and taxes.
What can we help with in Greece?
We can cover the majority of issues that private individuals and small businesses require in Greece including
- The purchase or sale of Greek property. Buying or selling property in Greece works, unsurprisingly, in a different way to that in the UK and the documentation is likely to be in Greek. You therefore need a law firm who can go through the documentation and advise you on the purchase and guide you through the system, especially if you have never purchased property in Greece before.
- Greek probate. British people have owned property in Greece for decades and as a result from time to time somebody dies owning a property there. We can assist you with an inheritance of assets in Greece and also work with your solicitors in the UK to make sure that the inheritance in both countries is co-ordinated.
- Greek Wills. Although there is no requirement to have a Will in Greece it makes very good sense to make one as that way you can make sure that the right people inherit your assets from you and that the inheritance is carried out in the smoothest and most tax effective way.
- Debt recovery. Whether you are owed money from somebody who lives in Greece or whether you have invested in a property in Greece that did not complete for some reason we can hep you with the recovery of debts in Greece
- When choosing a law firm to help you with your Greek legal issues it is important to consider certain things. Whilst many Greek lawyers can speak English it is often not good enough to explain complicated legal issues relating to a legal system that you are unfamiliar with. As we are British Solicitors we can explain what is required in Greece to you in a way that you will understand.
- Some Greek lawyers may also be unaccustomed to dealing with British clients on a daily basis and therefore this may sometimes create misunderstandings.
- It is a requirement that lawyers in Greece become members of the local Bar Association, which is the equivalent of the local Law Society.
- Greek lawyers have to carry out an 18 month apprenticeship after finishing their studies, which is similar to the 2 years that Solicitors have to carry out in the UK after their studies.