Legal Areas

Estate Planning & Law of Foundations

"The service at ADVANT Beiten is excellent, extremely fast and one can contact the contact person at any time. The foundation law experts understand exactly the needs of foundations and you are made aware of upcoming legal changes in the industry at an early stage."

(The Legal 500 Germany 2024 & The Legal 500 EMEA 2024)

As representatives of foundations in all their forms, we offer you comprehensive legal, tax and organisational expertise.

We advise private individuals on all aspects of asset planning, including succession planning for private and corporate assets. We regularly work with structures that include foundations or trusts.

With the increasing complexity of corporate transactions, parties frequently elect to use an escrow agent to secure agreed contractual terms. We act as this neutral trustee and conclude escrow agreements tailored to suit the relevant transaction. In addition, in times of crisis and rescue and restructuring cases, we function as a restructuring trustee for shareholders and banks.

Do you have questions about association law or complex federation law structures? We provide continuous, competent support.

Universities and higher education institutions can rely on our broad experience with implementing new structures, such as foundation universities or funding structures involving associations and foundations. We develop optimised structures for hospitals, advise on start-ups, and establish private operators.

When providing advice, we keep sight of neighbouring areas of law, such as tax, corporate and succession law. Our team develops holistic concepts and provides long-term support in national cases and those with an international connection.

At a glance:

  • Foundation law
  • Advising start-ups
  • Drafting articles of association
  • Foundation management
  • Non-profit law
  • Tax law
  • Corporate law
  • Succession law
  • Asset and corporate succession planning
  • Trusts
  • Trusteeship
  • Development of associations and federations
  • Proceedings before authorities and courts

Law of foundations

Our succession planning also embraces structures, such as foundations and trusts. We support our clients especially in the following fields: 

  • Advising on formation 
    • Establishing trusts and foundations (tax-privileged foundations, family foundations in Germany and abroad)
    • Double foundation models and trusts
    • Autonomous and dependent foundations 
  • Drafting and amending articles of incorporation and by-laws
  • Coordination with tax authorities and foundation supervisory authorities 
  • Tax law applicable to foundations and non-profit organisations

Tax Law

  • Designing tax-optimised succession 
  • Use of tax-saving structures after the death
  • Gifts and anticipated inheritance
  • Planning the inheritance tax burden in light of
    • inheritance tax
    • gift tax
    • land transfer tax and
    • income tax
  • Analysing the liquidity burden
  • Optimising asset structures with a view to minimising income and inheritance tax 
  • Foreign assets / avoidance of double taxation
  • (Criminal) Tax proceedings
  • Tax law applicable to foundations / non-profit law


Often, the assets of our clients and testators include extensive company assets. Our team ensures that rules developed in light of inheritance and family law considerations are always consistent with corporate law. We support you in all areas of corporate law, in particular with:

  • Corporate and holding structures (including pooling agreements)
  • Reorganising company or group structures
  • Succession and matrimonial property provisions
  • Drafting family and inheritance law agreements
  • Evaluations
  • Advising on disputes in the case of succession, including the assessment of corporate assets