Making a Will in Hungary

Find out how to make a will in Hungary, and the different types of will available...

If a foreign national dies without a will then the personal law (the law of their country) decides who inherits. So if a British person dies intestate in Hungary, British Law applies.

If the deceased does not have a will either in Hungary or another country, the Hungarian state, via a notary, can decide in accordance with the law of the country of the deceased's nationality who will inherit their assets. So friends, relatives or a charity may get nothing.

Types of Will

In Hungary four types of wills are recognised by law:

  • A will prepared and authenticated by a notary or prepared and countersigned by an attorney at law
  • A will written and signed by the testator (written by his own hand)
  • A will draw up by a third party and signed by a testator in the presence of two witnesses
  • An oral will - This is usually done when someone has a life threatening illness or in an emergency situation. To be valid it has to be made in the presence of two witnesses. The oral will expires after three months

If a will has been drawn up in a country other than Hungary and is valid in the country of origin, in principle the will is valid in Hungary.

In order for a will to be found easily, it should be registered.

Wills can be registered with the National Register of Wills (VONY). This is an electronic register managed by the Hungarian National Chamber of Civil Law Notaries. If you have drawn up your own will or have drawn up a will with a lawyer, the will should be submitted for registration to a notary.

If a will is drafted or deposited with a notary it is automatically registered with the VONY.

A will can also be registered with the Hungarian Bar Association. When a lawyer prepares a will, the lawyer can then submit it to the Bar Association.

Further Information

Information Supplied by Richard Holmes, GERRARDS International 1065 Budapest, Hajós utca 31. Office: +36 (1) 354 0010 Fax: +36 (1) 700 1810