The civil law in Estonia is part of the private law and it is based on the German law system. It comprises five parts:
The general part of the Estonian Civil Code offers universal information about the civil law, such as the passive and active legal abilities of people, the good faith principle, the definition of natural and legal persons, what are the main requirements when making a transaction and statutes on how civil law is enforced.
The Estonian laws on property rules over the rights people have over real estate property, the base they were created on and the conditions they cease to exist under. The laws also decide the right to own a property, the encumbrances a property can have, the pre-emption and security rights. The Estonian property law was created to protect the right to own and poses real estate. The main characteristic of the property law in Estonia is the land register law that presumes any entry in the land register to be valid, thus allowing third parties to engage in legal real estate relations based on the validity of the registration with the land register in the good faith principle.
The Estonian Law of Obligations enables the rules that are to be followed when conducting contractual or non-contractual relations. The Law of Obligations in Estonia is based on three principles: freedom of contract, good faith and party independence. For contractual obligations some rules apply in order to protect the weaker party. The law protects the weaker by ensuring minimum conditions are met when concluding a contract.
The Estonian Law of Succession was amended in 2009 and provides the legal frame for relations between heirs after the death of the owner of a property. The law decides who the first, the second and the third in line of succession follows. The amendment that has been brought enables a renunciation system that replaced the old acceptance system.
The Family Law Act in Estonia decides upon family relations, the protection and the rights family members have.
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