On October 9, 2013, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law HB 4613. This law should make it easier for landlords to remove the property of deceased tenants without judicial action or going through the Probate Court.
The new law allows landlords to take possession of their property after a tenant dies and remove all personal property. To do so, several conditions must be met, including:
- a good faith belief that the tenant has been dead for at least 18 days;
- a probate estate has not been opened; current rent has not been paid;
- the landlord has attempted to contact the authorized representative of the deceased tenant;
- the landlord has given the County Public Administrator notice;
- the landlord has attempted to contact the authorized representative of the deceased tenant; and
- the landlord has posted a notice on the door at least 10 days prior to entry that the landlord intends to retake possession of the premises.
In order for the landlord to take advantage of the new law, the landlord must have informed the tenant in writing of the tenant’s option to provide contact information for an authorized person the landlord could contact in the event of the tenant’s death.
If all of the requirements are met, it is possible the landlord will be able to recover possession of the leased property 28 days after the tenant dies.