top of page
  • Writer's pictureK-Law Consulting

[Korean Inheritance Law] Who Would Become Inheritors And What Shares The Inheritors Have

2022. 1. 13.

When someone dies, the inheritance of the deceased happens under the Korean inheritance law. If the deceased makes a will before he/she dies, the property and debt of the deceased are distributed by the will. However, if the deceased does not make a will, the distribution happens according to the rule of intestate succession from the Korean inheritance law. This law sets forth the rule, and according to the rule, people become beneficiaries in the following order:

-1st rank: Lineal descendants (children / grandchildren ...) and Spouse

-2nd rank: Lineal ascendants (parents / grandparents ...) and Spouse

-3rd rank: Brothers and sisters

-4th rank: Collateral blood relatives within the fourth degree

If there are two or more inheritors in the same rank and different degrees, the closest in the degree of relationship shall have the priority of getting inheritance and those inheritors who are two or more inheritors standing in the same degree of relationship become co-inheritors.

You may wonder why the spouse is in 1st and 2nd rank. The spouse is treated specially in rank. If there is no one in 1st and 2nd except the spouse, the spouse becomes the sole inheritor. However, if there is anyone in the 1st or 2nd rank, the spouse becomes the co-inheritor.

For example, if the deceased has a spouse, one child, and one grandchild, the grandchild can’t be an heir and the spouse and one child become co-inheritors.

Basically, the shares of the co-inheritors are all equal, but the spouse has an extra portion. The spouse has 50% more shares than those of other co-inheritors. Then the example above, the child has 2/5 of the inheritance shares and the spouse has 3/5 of the inheritance shares.

Thank you.

*All the information included in this article is for general informational purposes only, and the contents herein should not be relied upon as legal advice. Should you have any questions about this article, please contact the author (

Recent Posts

See All

[미주 중앙일보 2023년 11월 22일 (수) 중앙경제 전문가기고의 "한국법 이야기"에 게재된 칼럼입니다.] - 한국 국적 유지하고 본인이 직접 신청 - 피해 변제 및 피해자와 합의 선행돼야 올해도 어김없이 재외국민에 대한 기소중지자 특별자수제도(이하 본건 제도)가 11월 1일부터 12월 31일까지 시행된다. 작년에는 본지의 칼럼을 통해 2회에 걸쳐 본건

[미주 중앙일보 2023년 9월 27일 (수) 중앙경제 전문가기고의"한국법 이야기"에 게재된 칼럼입니다.] - 10년 내 수령·양도소득세 신고 납부 중요 - 관련 서류·은행 계좌·해외송금 등 준비해야 어느날 갑자기 조상 대대로 내려온 한국 땅이 수용되었다면서 보상금 협의를 하라는 통지를 받거나 보상금이 공탁되었다는 통지를 받았던 한인들이 있을 것이다. 미국

[미주 중앙일보 2023년 8월 30일 중앙경제 전문가기고의 "한국법 이야기"에 게재된 칼럼입니다.] - 현행법만으론 부당한 상황 막기 어려워 - 시행 전 충분한 토론과 여론 수렴 필요 최근 다시 불거져 나오는 상속권 상실과 결격 사유에 대한 이야기는 사실 2019년 연예인 A의 상속 분쟁 때부터 본격적으로 대중들의 관심을 끌게 되었다. 한국 민법상 상속

bottom of page