My children-US citizens -inherited a house from their French grandfather who died. The house has been sold. The notary that concluded the sale doesn't seem to know anything. She can't get their share of the proceeds into a US bank. That's another story!
How are home sales recorded in France? Does some record go to the France government? Are taxes taken out during the sale to cover them?
Any help, advice, or experience with French home sales and taxes is greatly appreciated.
Plus, many french notaries (not mine of course) are old farts who still work on an abacus and could not be bothered to give any kind of service to people they don't know. Especially in English.
What's more, some notary's would be happy to keep the funds in their escrow account indefinitely of pay it to some neighbour or tax collector without checking. Of course any notary should be able to send money to any person who has a right to it, even if that person lives in the US or Farawaylistan. This is 2016.
If it is a substantial amount, it might be an option to ask an independent property contract advisor like Wim van Teeffelen of http://www.compromisdevente.info/english/ to go hunt for the process papers and proceeds. Dutch guy, very honest.
The French legal fees will already have been deducted. I don't know how the inheritance tax situation is, but there might be rulings and agreements between France and the US as to which final system applies.
A French notary cannot be expected to know US law and send proceeds to a US bank account, which, incidentally, would probably involve your children paying additional tax on the proceeds if US taxes are higher. All home sales are recorded in France and, yes, the government does get to know about it and there is no way the notary will be able to avoid any inheritance tax or added value tax your children will have to pay.
A notaire is there to record things and make sure that everything is done according to the law, she isn't there to help out with anything such as transferring funds out of the country, your children will need to take care of that.