Can the sole beneficiary “release all interest” in possessions and security deposit left behind by a deceased tenant without interfering with the estate?

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Can the sole beneficiary “release all interest” in possessions and security deposit left behind by a deceased tenant without interfering with the estate?

The landlord originally asked for written permission to use security deposit to clean out apartment. I’m not executor of the estate (currently there is none) so I don’t have the authority to provide that permission. Now the landlord is asking me, as beneficiary, to “release all interest” in writing, so he can clean out the apartment, while still protecting himself. I want to make this process easier for him but don’t want to do anything to interfere with the estate. Would releasing interest which in turn would give him the ability to use deposit to dispose of things be considered an interference?

Asked on June 11, 2012 under Estate Planning, New Jersey

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  I would NOT sign anything if you are not the executor.  Next, family members should be clearing out the apartment and putting the belongings some where safe, not the landlord.  That should be fine (with out knowing more here) until the estate is probatesd and the executor can figure it out.  If you need more time then maybe you could pay one months rent again.  Good luck.


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