It’s all in the detail

This is a bit of a méli-mélo or hotchpotch of a blog today because I have one snippet of information that is fascinating but useless and another which is boring but highly useful! So with which to start?

Let’s get changes to french inheritance law out of the way first which will have an important affect on Britons and non-French EU nationals. Previously (and thanks to Napoleon), everyone owning property in France was subject to France’s inheritance laws which meant that, on the death of one spouse, their half of the property was automatically passed to their children rather than to the surviving spouse. This rule was introduced to prevent children being disinherited by their parents and although the surviving spouse was allowed to continue to live in the property, he or she did not fully own it and could not sell it without agreement of the children and giving them half of the proceeds.

While this is still the case for French citizens, the European parliament has now passed a regulation which allows expats in France to dictate in a will that they want the law of the state of their nationality to apply to their estate and not French inheritance law. This, in effect, means Britons in particular can leave their estate to whoever they wish and not be bound by France’s strict inheritance rules as at present, which is great news for my clients as it takes away one of the last complications of buying property in France.

So onto something far less useful but a little more interesting: Did you know that Beethoven used to keep 60 coffee beans on his desk. Why 60? Well apparently 60 is the magical number of beans that it takes to make 7 grams of coffee – which in turn will give you the perfect shot of coffee. Of course the exact formula of coffee beans make the difference, the degree of roasting and no doubt the side of the bush that they were picked from. I have never had much time for bean counters but a cup of coffee is far more important than the bottom line (I hope my accountant isn’t reading this) and this is one theory I am certainly looking forward to trying out.


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