Succession by Law
Heirs at law shall be the following:
The children and other descendants of a deceased person. A child born out of wedlock shall succeed its father and his relatives, and vice versa, if its paternity has been established in the manner provided for in legislation relating to children born out of wedlock. Article 5 shall apply to the right of succession of an adopted child and the right of succession after an adopted child.
The parents of a deceased person and their descendants.
The grandparents of a deceased person and their children.
The spouse of a deceased person.
The First Succession
The spouse of a deceased person shall inherit one third of the estate left by the deceased if the deceased is survived by children, and the children shall inherit two thirds equally. If a deceased person leaves no spouse his or her children and other descendants shall inherit the entire estate.
In case a child of a deceased person has died before that personís death, the children of the deceased child shall inherit the part to which that child would have been entitled. More distant relatives shall succeed the deceased in the same manner.
The Second Succession
[If a deceased person does not leave any surviving descendants, his or her spouse shall inherit the entire estate.]1)
In case a deceased person leaves no spouse his or her parents shall inherit the entire estate equally. If one parent did not survive the deceased, the part to which that parent would have been entitled shall be inherited by the children or other descendants of that parent in the manner provided for in Article 2. If the deceased parent did not leave any descendants the part to which that parent would have been entitled shall be inherited by the other parent.
In case a deceased person does not leave surviving parents, the part to which each parent would have been entitled shall be inherited by the children or other descendants of that parent. If one of the deceased parents did not leave any surviving descendants, the descendants of the other parent shall inherit the entire estate.
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 1.
The Third Succession
If a deceased person is not survived by any heir under Article 2 or 3, his or her estate shall be distributed equally between the parents of the father and mother of the deceased, respectively. If a grandparent has died before the deceased the part that would have been inherited by that grandparent shall be inherited by that grandparentís children. If the parents of either the deceased personís father or mother, and their children, are survived by the deceased, the entire estate shall be inherited by the parents of the deceased personís other parent, and their children.
An adopted child and its descendants, including descendants by adoption, have right of succession after the adoptive parents and their relatives, and vice versa, as provided for in Articles 2 - 4.
Adoption has the effect of cancelling the rights of succession by law between an adopted child and its natural parents.
If a surviving spouse, who is sole heir at law of the other spouse, dies without having married again or left any surviving descendants, his or her estate shall be distributed equally between the respective heirs of both spouses, provided the surviving spouse has not made other dispositions by will.
If a surviving spouse dies without leaving any surviving heirs, his or her estate shall be inherited by the heirs of the other spouse.
For the purposes of this article the words Ąheirs of the other spouseď shall refer to the persons having right of succession to the estate of that spouse at the time of death of the surviving spouse.
Deferred Estate Settlement
[After the death of a spouse the other spouse has the right of beneficial enjoyment of the joint estate with the common descendants of both spouses, if the deceased spouse has not provided by will that distribution is to take place.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 2.
[A surviving spouse has the right of beneficial enjoyment of the joint estate with the descendants of the other spouse that do not have legal competence to manage their financial affairs and are not their common descendants, if their guardian or guardians grant their approval, and if the deceased spouse did not provide by will that distribution is to take place. If the surviving spouse has custody or guardianship of stepchildren who do not have legal competence to manage their financial affairs, that spouse, however, has the right of beneficial enjoyment of the joint estate as provided for in Article 7.
A surviving spouse has the right of beneficial enjoyment of the joint estate with his or her stepchildren who are legally competent to manage their financial affairs, provided their approval is granted.
A surviving spouse has the right of beneficial enjoyment of the joint estate with his or her stepchildren, irrespective of whether they have legal competence to manage their financial affairs and without approval according to the first or second paragraphs above being necessary, if the deceased spouse has made such provision by will.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 3.
[A surviving spouse can not be permitted beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate if that spouse has been declared bankrupt or if his or her assets are insufficient to discharge the liabilities. This shall also apply if the spouse can not be trusted to manage the estate because of irresponsible conduct as regards that spouseís own financial affairs.
A surviving spouse who has been deprived of the competence to manage his or her personal or financial affairs can not be permitted beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate, except with the approval of the Supervisor of Guardians.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 4.
[A person wishing to be allowed beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate shall, as soon as possible after the death of the deceased spouse, apply for such licence with the magistrate in the administrative area where the settlement of the estate would take place.
An application for beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate shall state the names of the heirs, their national registry numbers, and their places of residence. A survey of the assets and liabilities of both spouses shall also be presented in the application or enclosed with it. If a licence for beneficial enjoyment a joint estate is contingent upon the approval of other persons, cf. the first or second paragraphs of Article 8, the approvals shall be written in the application or enclosed with it. If the right to beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate is based on a provision made in the will of the deceased spouse, cf. the third paragraph of Article 8, a copy of the will shall be enclosed with the application.
If the magistrate considers that the situation of the applicant may be such as described in Article 9, he may appoint a guardian ad hoc in order to guard the interests of any heirs who lack legal competence to manage their financial affairs and for whom the applicant is a custodian or guardian.
If the magistrate considers that the requirements for being granted a licence of beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate are met by the applicant, he shall grant such licence and provide the applicant with a document evidencing this.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 5.
[A joint estate subject to beneficial enjoyment by a surviving spouse comprises the marital property of both spouses and any separate property that according to statute provisions or the provisions of a marriage settlement is to be subject to the rules applying to marital property after the death of a spouse. Any earnings and other acquisitions of the spouse having beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate shall also become a part of the joint estate, unless such valuables are to become the separate property of that spouse according to law.
Inheritance or gifts received by the surviving spouse shall, however, not become a part of the joint estate if that spouse declares to the magistrate within two months from when the inheritance or gift came to his or her knowledge that the valuables in question shall not become a part of the joint estate. The valuables in question shall then become the separate property of the surviving spouse. Those valuables, and other separate property, shall be kept distinct from the property belonging to the joint estate.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 6.
[A surviving spouse having beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate shall have the competence of an owner with respect to the joint estateís property. That spouse shall be liable for the financial undertakings of the deceased spouse as if they were his or her own.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 7.
A spouse having beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate can at any time request that distribution take place.
In case a spouse having beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate marries again, his or her right of beneficial enjoyment is cancelled.
[A spouse who has been granted a licence of beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate with his or her stepchildren as provided for in the first paragraph of Article 8 shall have the inheritance of a stepchild distributed if the stepchild requests such distribution within three months after having acquired legal competence to manage his or her financial affairs. If no such request is made within this period of time a stepchild who has legal competence to manage his or her financial affairs can request distribution to himself or herself in the manner provided for in the second paragraph.
A stepchild who has legal competence to manage his or her financial affairs and has approved a surviving spouseís beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate as required in the second paragraph of Article 8, can request distribution to himself or herself within one year from when such request is made.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 8.
A heir who establishes ...1) that a surviving spouse neglects his or her duty of providing for the heirís maintenance, or that the spouse depletes the joint estate by financial mismanagement or provides a reason to fear that such depletion will occur, can request distribution to himself or herself.
If a surviving spouse gives a gift from the property of a joint estate which is of a value disproportionately high with a view to the value of the estate, a heir can have the disposition invalidated by judgment, provided the party receiving the gift knew or should have known that the donor had beneficial enjoyment of the estate of a deceased spouse and that the value of the gift was excessive. Such action can however only be brought if official settlement proceedings have been commenced or if a heir has requested that settlement take place. The action shall be brought within one year from when the disposition comes to the knowledge of the heir or his guardian, and not later than three years from when the gift was delivered.
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 9.
[After the death of a person who has a claim for distribution of inheritance from a joint estate subject to beneficial enjoyment by a surviving spouse, his heirs are only entitled to request distribution under the same conditions as would have applied to the deceased.
The creditors of a heir are not entitled to request distribution.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 10.
If a joint estate has been significantly depleted by reason of financial mismanagement on the part of a surviving spouse, the heirs may, at the time distribution takes place, claim restitution from the estate. If full restitution can not be obtained in this manner half the remainder may be claimed from the surviving spouseís separate property; however, this claim shall be subordinate to the claims of creditors.
Claims for restitution that can not be settled at the time distribution takes place between a surviving spouse and the heirs of the deceased can not be brought up later.
The inheritance due a heir from a joint estate subject to beneficial enjoyment by a surviving spouse shall be the heirís separate property if the heir is married or marries later. This arrangement can not be altered by a marriage settlement. After the heirís death such property shall however be considered his or her marital property, provided the deceased whom the heir succeeded did not specify otherwise and provided a different arrangement has not been specified in a marriage settlement. This shall also apply if distribution takes place during the life of the heir.
The inheritance due a heir from a joint estate subject to beneficial enjoyment by a surviving spouse can not be assigned to others by the heir or used as a security for debt, and a heirís creditors can not seek satisfaction from such inheritance.
When distribution takes place between a spouse having beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate and the heirs of a deceased spouse, the share of the deceased spouse shall be distributed among that spouseís heirs in conformity with the generally applicable rules.
If distribution takes place after the death of both spouses the right of the spouse who died later, as legal heir to the estate of the spouse who died earlier, is cancelled.
In case distribution takes place after the death of both spouses and it is established that no person can claim right of succession to the estate of the spouse that died earlier, the heirs of the spouse that died later shall inherit the entire estate. If the spouse that died later left no surviving heirs the heirs of the spouse that died earlier shall similarly inherit the entire estate.
A spouse having beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate is only competent to dispose of his own share of the estate by will. He or she may make dispositions concerning individual chattels within these limits, provided this does not conflict with what the deceased spouse may have specified in accordance with the second paragraph of Article 36.
General Provisions on Right of Succession
A child conceived before the death of a decedent shall have right of succession after the decedent if it is subsequently born and lives.
If a person has a right of succession after another person and both die, but it can not be established who died first, it shall be assumed that neither person survived the other.
Cancellation of Right of Succession
If a person has intentionally committed a crime punishable under the provisions of the General Penal Code, which results in the death of another person, a judgment may be rendered to the effect that he or she has forfeited the right of succession that was contingent upon the death of the deceased.
If a person has intentionally committed an act of violence against his or her parent or other relative by direct descent, threatened such relative, seriously damaged the relativeís reputation, or otherwise committed an act of gross transgression against such relative, punishable under criminal law, a judgment may be rendered to the effect that he or she has forfeited the right of succession after the victim of such act, if the victim so requests.
If a person has forfeited his right of succession in the above manner, his right of succession can be granted him anew by will, in part or entirely.
Upon the request of the prosecution in a criminal case a judgment may be rendered to the effect that a defendant who has committed an offence such as described in Articles 194 - 201 of the General Penal Code, No. 19/1940, in connection with the conception of a child, has forfeited his right of succession after the child.
If it is established in criminal litigation that a person has by duress, fraud or exploitation caused another person to make a disposition by will, or to refrain from making such a disposition, a judgment may be rendered to the effect that he or she has forfeited the right of succession after that person, excepting, however, the share due a forced heir. Such judgment can also be rendered if a person intentionally alters, destroys or secretes a will or other testamentary disposition.
The right of succession between spouses is cancelled by legal separation, divorce, and by the voiding of their marriage by judgment. In case a marriage was voidable at the time of death of one spouse, the other spouse shall not have right of succession:
1. If it is established in criminal litigation that the inception of the marriage constituted a criminal act on the part of that spouse. In case of a bigamous marriage the later spouse of the bigamist shall however not have right of succession if the former spouse is living and has such right.
[2. If that spouse requests a settlement of assets and liabilities as provided for in Article 30 of the Marriage Act, No. 31/1993]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 11.
Dispositions Concerning Future Inheritance, and Waiver of Inheritance
A prospective heir can not validly make dispositions concerning the inheritance expected by him in the future.
A prospective heir can validly waive his right of succession in favour of the person he or she would else have succeeded, either for a valuable consideration, or without such consideration. A person waiving his or her claim to inheritance must be legally competent to manage his or her financial affairs. The guardian of a minor or a person deprived of such competence can accept advancement of inheritance on his or her behalf, provided the Supervisor of Guardians has granted his approval.
In the absence of particular provisions to the contrary a waiver of a claim to inheritance shall be binding upon the descendants of the person waiving such claim.
In case spouses who have a legal heir in common extend advance inheritance to the heir from the marital property of either or both, the advance shall be deducted from the inheritance due the heir following the death of the spouse who dies first, up to the limit of its value. This shall however not affect a valid will executed by that spouse. Any part of the advance inheritance which can not be deducted from the inheritance due the heir following the death of the spouse who dies first shall be deducted when determining the share of the heir following the death of the surviving spouse, up to the limit of its value.
The above principles shall also apply in case a spouse having beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate extends advance inheritance to a heir from the possessions of the joint estate.
In case a spouse delivers to his or her stepchild, or a descendant of such child, valuables from his or her marital property, an agreement may be concluded to the effect that the valuables in question shall constitute advance inheritance from the other spouse, to be deducted from the inheritance due the heir on distribution from that spouseís estate.
[Valuables to which Articles 29 and 30 apply shall be deducted from the share of a heir at the relevant market price at the time the valuables are received, adjusted to the price level applicable at the time of distribution, when deduction from the heirís share takes place. If the market price of such valuables is significantly lower at that time as compared to the time when the advance inheritance was received, due to circumstances beyond the control of the heir, the deduction applied shall only be such as reasonable in order to establish equality among the heirs.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 12.
If an heir has received inheritance in advance of a value exceeding his share when distribution from the estate of a deceased takes place, the heir shall not, if no undertaking has been given to that effect, be obliged to reimburse the estate for the excess value received.
Advance inheritance under Articles 28 -30, or the value thereof, shall be added to the other assets of an estate when calculating the ownership share of a spouse and the shares of the heirs. If advance inheritance is of a higher value than the heirís actual share, the addition shall be limited to the share of the heir.
1. Testamentary Capacity
Any person who has attained the age of 18 years, or has entered marriage, can dispose of his or her property by will.
A will shall only be valid if the person making the disposition preparing was of such sound mind as to be capable of making the disposition in a reasonable manner.
2. Testamentary Power - Forced Heirs
A person who has descendants, including descendants by adoption, or is married, can only dispose of one third of his or her property by will.
A person can not, unless specially allowed by statute, make provisions concerning disposition of the share due a forced heir.
A person can provide by will that a certain forced heir shall inherit particular chattels from his or her separate or marital property, provided the value of such chattels does not exceed the aggregate value of the inheritance to which the heir is entitled, in addition to the part of a personís property which can be disposed of in accordance with Article 35.
3. Invalidity of Testamentary Dispositions
A testamentary disposition shall be void if testator was induced to make the disposition by duress, fraud or exploitation.
If it is shown that a provision in a will is, due to a writing or typing error or other mistake, different from what testator intended, the provision shall be implemented in accordance with testatorís actual intention, provided this can be established.
If a provision in the will of a deceased person has been included as a result of a misunderstanding, without however Article 37 being applicable, the provision shall be void if an incorrect belief of testator is deemed to have been decisive for the formulation of the provision.
A provision in a will to the effect that testatorís property shall be destroyed is invalid, unless it is based on a sound and sensible reason.
4. The Form of a Will
A will shall be executed in writing, and testator shall sign it or acknowledge his signature before a notary public or two witnesses.
If testator is illiterate his will shall be carefully read to him.
Testamentary witnesses shall at least have attained the age of 18 years. They shall be reliable persons and of sound mind. The spouse of a testator shall not be summoned to witness his will, nor any persons related to testator by descent directly or by marriage, nor the siblings of testator. Nor is a person with comparable ties to testator by reason of adoption a competent witness.
A person with family ties as described in the first paragraph above to a person having financial interests concerning a will, is not a competent witness to the disposition. The same shall apply to a person having such interests himself, and to a person employed by a party or institution having such interests. Insignificant interests shall however not affect the competency of a witness. A personís commission to serve as executor of the estate of a deceased shall not affect that personís competency as a witness to a testamentary disposition. ? 1)
1) Law No. 86/1989, Article 16.
Testamentary witnesses shall include in their attestation a statement to the effect that testator summoned them to witness his will, and that testator signed the will or acknowledged his signature in the presence of both witnesses. The attestation shall furthermore include a statement to the effect that the witnesses are aware that the disposition to be witnessed is a will. The witnesses shall sign their attestation as soon as possible after testator has signed or acknowledged his will.
The attestation shall furthermore include a statement to the effect that testator was of such sound mind as to be capable of making a will. Other information which may be of relevance for the assessment of the willís validity may be included.
The testamentary witnesses shall state the location and date of their attestation and the exact time at which testator signed or acknowledged his will. They shall also state their addresses in an unmistakeable manner.
A notary public attesting a will shall observe the same principles as stated in Article 42.
The duties of a notary public in connection with wills shall be further defined by administrative provisions to be issued by the Ministry of Justice.
1) Law No. 86/1989, Article 16.
A person who has suddenly fallen seriously ill or is in a situation of grave danger may make a will orally before two summoned witnesses or a notary public. The witnesses or the notary shall record the dispositions made as soon as possible, and attest to them by their signatures. The provisions of Articles 40 - 43 shall be observed in this respect as applicable.
A will made in the manner described in the first paragraph above shall be void if not renewed by testator within four weeks from when testator could first prepare a will in the normal manner.
5. Contestation of Wills
If it is established that a testator lacked capacity, cf. Article 34, or that a provision in his will had its origin in circumstances such as referred to in Articles 37 or 38, the provision in question shall not be implemented if contested by a heir.
In case a will signed by testator and attested by witnesses does not fulfil the requirements of Articles 40 - 43 in other respects and a heir claims that it should be voided in accordance with Article 34 or Articles 37 - 38, a party invoking the will must refute the claims of the contesting party by statements made in court by the testamentary witnesses, or other evidence.
The attestation of a notary public shall have the evidential value of other official documents. [?]1)
If the attestation of testamentary witnesses is complete as regards the points mentioned in Article 42 and the first paragraph of Article 44, this shall be deemed true to fact, unless refuted by a contesting party by evidence to the contrary.
1) Law No. 91/1991, Article 160.
A will may be contested by a statement submitted to the [magistrate],1) [a testamentary executor]2 or heirs who have been granted a licence of private settlement, as soon as the occasion to do so arises. A statement to this effect made after the settlement procedure has been brought to a conclusion shall not be taken into account unless it is established that the heir in question did not have an opportunity to make the statement during the settlement procedure, or if criminal acts have been committed in connection with the preparation of the will or in the relations between the heirs.
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 13.
2) Law No. 20/1991, Article 136.
6. Alteration and Revocation of Wills
When a testator wishes to alter individual provisions of his will, or add to its provisions, the same rules shall be observed as apply to the preparation of wills.
A will may be invalidated by testator if he states unequivocally that it is revoked. In case of a joint or mutual will revocation can only become effective if it is brought to the attention of the other party, unless this is prevented by extraordinary circumstances.
A person may undertake the obligation with respect to his heir or a third party not to make a will or not to revoke or alter a will already made. The provisions of Article 34 and Articles 40 - 43 shall be observed when this is done. If the person undertaking such obligation lacks legal competence to manage his financial affairs, the approval of the Supervisor of Guardians is necessary.
7. Restricted Inheritance
In case there is particular danger that a personís forced heir will mismanage the share due him, he or she may, by will, provide for special restrictions to be applied to the share due individual descendants or the spouse, for example that the share be subject to the rules governing funds owned by minors; that a heir be paid a certain sum from a principal at certain intervals, or that alienation of certain property or its use by creditors as security for their claims shall be subject to certain limitations. Such provisions in a will shall only become valid if approved by the Ministry of Justice.
The Minister of Justice may cancel such restrictions in part or in whole when a heir has attained the age of 21 years, if the heir establishes that the reasons on which the restriction in question was based do no longer apply. The Minister may also allow higher sums to be paid to a heir than specified in the will, if the situation of the heir or the heirís family make this urgently necessary.
A restriction applied to inheritance is cancelled, at the latest, upon the death of the heir.
[The safekeeping of restricted inheritance shall be subject to the same rules as governing the safekeeping of funds owned by minors, as specified in the Majority Act, No. 71/1997.]1)
An heir can not make legal dispositions concerning the principal of restricted inheritance, but subject to any relevant provisions in a will his right to dispose of payments that have become due shall be governed by the generally applicable rules.
The creditors of a heir can not seek satisfaction of their claims from restricted inheritance during the heirís lifetime, except for damages which the heir has been ordered to pay by judgment in consequence of a criminal or other act committed by him intentionally or with gross negligence.
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 14.
Inheritance due a heir who is not a forced heir may be made subject to restrictions by will. The provisions of the second and third paragraphs of Article 50, and of Article 51, shall apply to such inheritance unless a different arrangement is specified in the will.
8. Construction of Wills
In case a person devises or bequests property to two or more heirs without specifying either their shares or the order in which they are to receive their shares, both or all heirs shall receive equal shares.
Gifts Mortis Causa
The above provisions concerning wills shall also apply to gifts which are only intended to become effective upon the death of the giver, and to gifts given in contemplation of death.
Reversion of Property to the State Inheritance Tax Fund, etc.
If a person leaves no heir, his or her property shall revert to the [State Treasury].1) ?1) .
The Minister of Justice may contest a will on behalf of the [Treasury].1) In case the Minister deems that a contestable will indicates the actual intention of testator he may decide not to contest the will. In special circumstances the Minister may furthermore waive the [Treasuryís]1) right to property in favour of a deceased personís relatives, in particular if a deceased person lacked the capacity to make a will or was prevented by circumstances from making a will.
1) Law No. 174/2000, Article 6.
1) Law No. 20/1991, Article 136.
Entry Into Effect, etc.
This Act shall enter into effect 6 months after its publication.
In the absence of provisions to the contrary this law shall be applied to settlements of the estates of persons deceased after the law enters into effect.
If a surviving spouse has beneficial enjoyment of a joint estate at the time this law enters into effect, the provisions of this law shall apply to the estate as from that time. The right of succession following the deceased spouse shall, however, be determined by the provisions of the law in effect at the time of death of that spouse.
Testamentary dispositions made while previous law remained in effect shall be deemed valid even if the requirements of this law relating to testamentary capacity and form are not fulfilled. Testamentary power and other matters relating to the substance of a testamentary disposition shall be governed by the provisions of this law.
A testamentary disposition made while the previous law was in effect shall be deemed valid even if it does not fulfil the requirements of the previous law relating to testamentary capacity and form, provided the requirements of this law relating to these matters are fulfilled.
Statute provisions in laws concerning copyright of writers and right of publication, and the laws on family estates and hereditary demise, shall remain in effect in spite of the entry into force of this law.
Repealed Statutes, etc.
The following laws and legal provisions shall be repealed as from the entry into effect of this law:
- The Inheritance Act, No. 42, 23 May 1949.
- Open Letter of 15 January 1768 Concerning Disposition of Inheritance Received by a Felon Serving a Sentence of Labour.
- Royal Edict of 9 November 1825 Concerning Disposition of Abandoned Inheritance in Iceland.
- Law No. 39, 27 June 1921, on the Inception and Termination of Marriage, Article 50.
- Law No. 57, 27 June 1921, on the Relations of Parents to Their Children Born in Wedlock, Articles 24 and 25.
- Law No. 20, 20 June 1923, on Rights and Duties in Marriage, Chapter VIII.
- The General Penal Code, Law No. 19, 12 February 1940, Article 265.
- Law No. 87, 5 June 1947, on the Relations of Parents to Their Children Born Out of Wedlock, Articles 17 and 20.
Furthermore, any legal provisions conflicting with the provisions of this law shall be repealed.
The provisions of the first paragraph of Article 3 and Articles 7 - 10, 16 and 31, as amended 1 June 1989, shall not apply to rights of succession of forced heirs, beneficial enjoyment of joint estates at death by surviving spouses, or to settlement of advance inheritance following the death of persons deceased prior to that date.
While Law No. 74/1972 on District Judicial Authority, Police and Customs Administration, etc., remains in effect, the persons performing the duties of probate officers in accordance with that law shall perform the duties of magistrates as provided for in this law.]1)
1) Law No. 48/1989, Article 16.