EU alleges tax treatment infringes the free movement of capital
The European Commission has decided to refer Greece to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) regarding its inheritance tax exemption for primary residences, which applies only to EU nationals residing in Greece.
The Greek legislation favours exclusively those taxpayers (heirs) who already live in Greece and who typically are Greek nationals. By contrast, the legislation penalises those beneficiaries who inherit a property in Greece but live outside of the country, and who normally are non-Greek nationals or Greek nationals who work, study or live abroad.
Such a difference in tax treatment constitutes an infringement of the free movement of capital guaranteed by Article 63 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and Article 40 of the EEA Agreement.
Greece was sent a request taking the form of a reasoned opinion on 20 November 2013, asking it to amend its legislation. As this was not amended, the case is now being referred to the CJEU.