What happens if I die during the course of my residential rental lease?

Based on new legislation for all leases signed on or after July 1, 2012 an heir, personal representatives, devisee, or assignee may terminate your lease if you die prior to its expiration. The termination of the lease will be effective on the last day of the second month after the request to terminate is either hand-delivered or post-marked to the landlord. The estate is still responsible for any rent owed prior to the tenant’s death and for the two months after the request to terminate is made. The estate will also be responsible for any costs of bringing the rental property back to its condition when the rental began, except for ordinary wear and tear. A landlord is not allowed to require a longer than two month notice period to terminate after a tenant’s death.

See also our publication Tenants & Landlords: Rights and Responsibilities

For more information, see: W. Va. Code §37-6-11 (2015).