Succession: what happens to the dwelling at the time of death?

Even in the absence of a donation or will , the widow or widower is ensured to stay in his/her dwelling. Married couple, civil partner or partners: what are the consequences for the dwelling of the surviving spouse?

Dwelling and death of the surviving spouse

The right of the surviving partner on the dwelling are detailed on the page: Succession between spouses: rights of the surviving spouse

Dwelling and death of the civil partner

The protection isn’t as strong but similar for the civil partners. The surviving one can benefit from free use for one year of the mutual dwelling, not to mention the furniture in it, except if the partner who has passed away deprived the latter in his will .

If the civil partners rented the dwelling, the rent shall be reimbursed to the partner, through the succession of the deceased . The surviving partner also benefits from a lease takeover if the deceased was the only owner in the rental contract, which means the insurance of being able to the preserve the dwelling, if he wishes to.

Dwelling and passing away of partner

The partner must think of protecting themselves, as the law doesn’t give any right to the surviving one. If the latter isn’t the owner of the dwelling, this person has no right to remain in the dwelling.

  • If both were joint owners, the latter is not protected anymore. On the death of a partner, his heirs, new undivided owners, can request for the property’s sale.
  • If the couple was a tenant of the dwelling, on the death of one of the cohabiting partners, the surviving cohabiting partner can claim for a lease takeover if they had lived with the signatory of the lease for at least one year on the date of death and if the cohabitation was notorious.
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