Skip to main content

How do I get possession of my rental property after the tenant dies and what do I do with her personal property?

Trenton, NJ |

My tenant recently died. She is the only person on the lease. How do I go about getting possession back - can I just go in and take the property back or do I have to go to court? Also she did not have a will (as far as I know). She told me she did not have a good relationship with her family and I do not have any information to contact them. I left my contact info at the property just in case someone came by but no one has contacted me. She told me she wanted her stuff donated - can I go ahead and donate it?

Attorney Answers 2


You should consult with a probate attorney in your area. If there is no administrator of the estate, you may need to apply to the Surrogate's Court to have an administrator appointed. You can do this as a creditor of the Estate. The Surrogate will appoint and administrator and you will have someone to deal with concerning your property.

Do not dispose of the tenant's property as when someone is appointed, that person may bring a claim against you.

Good luck.

Wayne Plaza II
155 Route 46 West
Wayne, NJ 07470
Phone No. (973) 256-0456
Fax No. (973) 256-4784

This message does not constitute legal advice and is for informational purposes only. This message does not establish an attorney-client relationship, which can only be established once a retainer agreement has been fully executed between you and this firm. For legal advice, please contact and retain an attorney of your own choosing.

Mark as helpful

2 lawyers agree


It depends on your lease agreement, is it transferable? If there are no other named entities, I would file an eviction action and have a court order locking her out, name her estate in the pleadings. Then place her belongings in storage and place her estate on notice of its whereabouts to be located.

We offer free consultations 201-880-8999

Mark as helpful

Landlord-tenant topics

Recommended articles about Landlord-tenant

What others are asking

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer

Browse all legal topics