This chapter is aimed at summarizing the observations made by the
European commission and its conclusions with respect to the
inheritance tax issues. Indeed, in the absence of any harmonization
rules in the inheritance tax field, Member States are free to choose
their own rules regarding inheritance tax and this circumstance may
give rise to (i) unrelieved or only partially relieved double or
even multiple taxation, and (ii) discriminatory tax treatments
applied to inheritances with cross-border elements. This situation
is not facilitated by the existing bilateral tax treaties dealing
with inheritance tax, which are a few number and sometimes provide
solutions which are not fully satisfactory. In 2010, such a context
led the European Commission to take action in order to tackle
inheritance tax issues more effectively. The result was a non-
binding solution and the adoption of a Recommendation in order to
raise awareness among Member States on these issues and to invite
them to change their legislation accordingly.
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