Death of Seller or Buyer in Ontario


If a seller signs a listing agreement with a brokerage, but dies before any offers have occurred, is the contract binding on the heirs of the seller to continue offering the property for sale? 

If the same thing happens but with an offer situation, what are the rights of the buyer(s)?

In case where the same thing happens but with a buyer client, my guess is the contract is null and void. However, if a buyer’s offer is accepted but a death occurs before closing would this still be void? What are the rights and options of the seller(s)?


The agreements never become null and void, whether they be listings, Buyer Representation Agreements or Agreements of Purchase and Sale.

They continue until completed, terminated or expired.

The Estate can accept an Offer immediately after death, if there is a Will.

If there is no Will, then the estate must await a Court appointed Trustee, to act.

It is also important to note that the transaction cannot be closed until the Estate Trustee has been appointed. So, that will affect the choice of the closing date.

Brian Madigan LL.B., Broker

Comments 2

  1. First month in real estate, was in sales office, my friend sold a lovely couple a house, they were so happy and even though I was not part of the deal, we had joked and I had wished them well. All paperwork signed, this young and excited couple left in their car. We found out later, they were killed in a head on collision two blocks from us. Their family closed on the house as the offer was valid (aunt and uncle took in the kids). I will never forget this and I can still see their faces.

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