Can overseas Vietnamese receive inheritance as real estate?

Mr. A passed away, leaving his inheritance as a house for his daughter, Ms. C, who is currently residing in Australia. Ms. C knows that overseas Vietnamese cannot own land use rights in Vietnam. Therefore, Ms. C contacted LawNet to find out more information whether she can inherit the house that her father left for her? Regarding this issue, LawNet would like to response as follows:

Pursuant to point đ Clause 1 Article 169 of the Land Law 2013 of Vietnam, acquisition of land use rights is prescribed as follows:

Overseas Vietnamese who are eligible to own houses in Vietnam under the housing law may acquire land use rights through purchase, lease-purchase, inheritance or donation of houses associated with land use rights, or acquire land use rights in housing development projects;

Moreover, pursuant to Clause 1 Article 186 of the Land Law 2013 of Vietnam, overseas Vietnamese who are entitled to own houses in accordance with the housing law are entitled to own houses associated with residential land use rights in Vietnam.

Pursuant to Clause 2 Article 8 of the Law on Housing 2014 of Vietnam, requirements for homeownership recognition of overseas Vietnamese are prescribed as following:

- Permitted to enter Vietnam;

- Having legitimate housing through agreements on commercial housing purchase, lease purchase with enterprises or cooperatives conducting real estate trading (hereinafter referred to as real estate enterprise); agreements on housing purchase, gifting, exchange, inheritance with households or individuals; agreements on residential land transfer in the project on commercial housing construction which is permitted to divide the piece of land into smaller lots/plots for sales as prescribed.

Thus, according to the above regulations of Vietnamese law, Ms. C is a Vietnamese residing in Australia, if she is permitted to enter Vietnam, Ms. C will be able to own a house associated with residential land use right in Vietnam. Therefore, Ms. C is entitled to inherit the house left by Mr. A.

In case that Ms. C is not permitted to enter Vietnam, she shall not be granted the certificate of land use rights and ownership of houses and other land-attached assets but may transfer or donate the inherited land use rights according to Clause 3 Article 186 of the Land Law 2013 of Vietnam as following

- In case of transferring land use rights, the heirs may act as the transfer or in the contract of transfer of land use rights;

- In case of donating land use rights, the people to receive land use rights must be the subjects specified at Point e, Clause 1, Article 179 of this Law and be eligible under the housing law, in which the heir may act as the donor in the contract or written document on donation commitment;

- In case of not making the transfer or donation of land use rights, the heir or his/her representative with a lawful document on authorization, shall submit a dossier on the inheritance to the land registration agency in order to update on the cadastral book.

Bao Ngoc



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