A friend of mine lost her father recently. She is American, but her father was Brazilian. She traveled to Brazil for the funeral and to start all the legal stuff. After more than a week visiting dozens notary public offices, she sent me an email with some findings:
– Brazil’s bureaucracy is much worse than you think: Besides the usual stupidity of having several documents to “prove who you are” (CIC, RG, birth certificate, etc) she found that being married is a big problem for women. That’s because there are certain documents that “only the husband can sign!” Now, her husband is also American and had not traveled to Brazil… So one of the notaries ended up recommending the best way to bypass this: not mention that she was married.
Now she only has to wait five, maybe six years until the will is executed.
– Death subsidy: Besides just being amazingly expensive and time consuming, the Brazilian system has some laws that sound too stupid to be true. My friend’s father had a mortgage, and while she was trying to figure out how they would now pay for it, she got informed by a lawyer that “the mortgage was not a problem anymore”.
That’s right! If you die in Brazil, your mortgage is gone. At first I could not believe it and thought it was some shenanigan that lawyer was trying to pull. But no, he was right! My brother even told me about some story in the news recently about gangs who would buy real estate using old people’s ID so eventually the loan would just be ‘forgiven’.
I wonder how lenders try to avoid this kind of thing. Does a loan application include a check-up? Can they discriminate on age? Would thy sell a house to someone who likes to skydive?
No wonder it is so hard to finance real estate down there.
While talking with my brother about this, he told me about another specially crazy idea that the great Brazilian legislative concocted: if a company has a marketing campaign that promises prizes, something like “find a special stamp in one of our boxes and get another product for free” kind of thing, and for some reason a prize is not given to a customer until the promotion is over, the government gets the prize!
I wonder what would happen if the company “dies” during a campaign. Would they still be required to give the government those freebies?