Inter Vivos Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Inter Vivos, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Inter Vivos?

It is a Latin word meaning “During the life of” or “among the living”. It refers to a gift in form of transfer of assets by a living person to another living person as an agreement. It is not refered to a transfer of property by the way of Will.

History and Meaning of Inter Vivos

Inter Vivos is a Latin term that translates to "between the living" or "during the life of." It refers to a legal term where a living person gifts or transfers an asset or property to another living person without the requirement of a will or any other form of bequeathment.

This term originated from Roman law, where it was used to describe transactions that took place during the life of the parties involved, mainly with respect to property transfers. Inter Vivos is often contrasted with testamentary gifts, which are gifts that activate after the individual dies.

Examples of Inter Vivos

  1. A mother gifts her house to her children while she is still alive, which means that the property will no longer belong to her.

  2. A person gives a sum of money to a friend during their lifetime, often as a form of payment or gratitude.

  3. A company owner grants their business shares to their employees before their retirement, allowing for ownership to be transferred before their death.

Legal Terms Similar to Inter Vivos

  1. Testamentary Gifts - A gift that is activated after an individual's death.

  2. Bequeathment - The act of leaving assets or personal property to a person or entity through a will.

  3. Intestate - A term used to describe a person who died without making a valid will to transfer assets.