Inheritance and the Right to Bequeath
Legal and Philosophical Perspectives
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In every Western democracy today, inheritances have a very profound influence on people’s lives. This motivates renewed scholarship on inheritance law by philosophy and the legal sciences. The present volume aims to contribute to some ongoing areas of inquiry while also filling some gaps in research.
It is organized in a highly interdisciplinary way. In the thirteen chapters of the book, written by outstanding philosophers and legal scholars, the following questions, among others, are discussed: What is the nature of the right to bequeath? What are the social functions of bequest and inheritance? What arguments concerning justice have philosophers and legal scholars advanced in favour or against practices of bequest and inheritance? How should we think about taxing the wealth transfers that occur in bequest and inheritance? In discussing these questions, the authors break new ground and offer much needed insight into several related domains, such as the philosophy of law; legal theory; general and applied ethics; social and political philosophy; theories of justice; and the history of legal, political, and economic thought.
This book will be of great interest to scholars in these areas as well as policy-makers.
Table of Contents
Thomas Gutmann, Daniel Halliday, Hans-Christoph Schmidt am Busch
2. What, if anything, is wrong with bequest?
3. The Morality of Charitable Bequests
Miranda Perry Fleischer
4. Is the right to bequeath a supernatural power?
5. The Right to Bequeath as a Common Legal Power
Constantin Luft and Thomas Gutmann
6. Property Rights and the Power to Transfer
7. The Double Function of Inheritance: Rethinking Conditional Bequests
8. Remembrance, Esteem and the Right to Bequeath
Hans-Christoph Schmidt am Busch
9. Inheritance Law and the Challenge of Securing Care in Old Age
10. Natural Right or Convention?
11. Property in the Tension between Family and Civil Society
12. Inheritance Tax Justice and Family Businesses
13. Taxing Wealth and Wealth Transfers in the 21st Century
Hans-Christoph Schmidt am Busch is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Braunschweig, Germany.
Daniel Halliday is Associate Professor in Political Philosophy at the University of Melbourne, Australia.
Thomas Gutmann is Professor of Civil Law and Philosophy of Law at the Faculties of Law and of Philosophy and Co-Director of the Research Institute for Philosophy of Law at the University of Münster, Germany.