Do contracts end automatically in the event of death?

Contracts don't just automatically end when a loved one passes away. So it is important to notify contractors and properly terminate contracts. In the event of death, there are special termination options in some cases.

Terminating contracts in the event of death – how should I proceed?

The most important thing to remember is that no contract ends unless the other party is notified of the death. So remember to cancel insurance policies (health insurance, household contents, accident and life insurance, etc.), subscriptions and memberships to clubs and associations, etc., and also inform the road traffic office.

The right of termination under tenancy law provides for an extraordinary right of termination in the event of the tenant’s death. The heirs of the deceased may terminate on the coming local customary date. The legal deadline (three months for apartments and six months for business premises) must also be observed. The relatives are entitled to this right of termination even if the lease agreement concerned actually provides for termination at a later date. It is important that the relatives exercise the extraordinary right of termination immediately.

Other areas also have special provisions in the event of death: a cell phone subscription, for example, is canceled on the date of death and does not pass to the heirs if they do not wish this. However, the condition is that neither relatives nor third parties continue to use the connection.

Checklist – which contracts must be terminated in the event of death?

First, get an overview of all of the deceased person’s contracts. Then, inform the deceased person’s contractual partners and, if necessary, terminate the contracts:

We recommend terminating contracts by registered mail. Some companies have online forms on their homepage that a relative of the deceased person can fill out in order to terminate the contract. In order to save unnecessary costs, it is best to terminate contracts as quickly as possible.

Who else has to be notified?

For completeness, you should include the death certificate (also called a death certificate or death certificate) with the notification of the death of a loved one. For example, for rapid notification of many parties to a contract, you can write a template with all the relevant information about the deceased and send it to the various agencies.

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