What should I do in the event of a client's death?

We regret that you have to contact us in connection with the death of a client. Death is usually unexpected and involves a great deal of administrative work for the surviving dependents.

We would like to support you so as little effort as possible is needed to process the death of a client at UBS Switzerland AG. This procedure only applies to clients domiciled in Switzerland.

Any person can report the death of a client. We need a medical death certificate, an official death certificate or the official certification of death.

We will register the client's death in our records and block the client relationship.

The following information will help you to deal with the death of a client and answer the most frequently asked questions.

Right of access to information

When a client dies, their legal successors (heirs) take their place. To protect the interests of the heirs, UBS Switzerland AG restricts transactions on the testator's banking relationships.

The heirs are entitled to receive information. In order to verify the entitlement to receive information, a certificate of inheritance (see also "Documents required to process the death of a client"), family booklet or certificate of information for heirs is required.

In addition to the heirs, executors, administrators, representatives of heirs and liquidators of estates also receive information, provided that they have proven their identity with an official document.

Authorized representatives with a general power of attorney of UBS Switzerland AG also receive information, provided they were still active on the date of death.

Right of disposal

In the event of the death of a client, the heirs form the community of heirs. If there are several heirs, they only have a joint right of disposal. UBS Switzerland AG requires the certificate of inheritance to determine the heirs entitled to dispose of the estate.

In addition, executors and liquidators of estates also have a right of disposal, provided they have identified themselves by means of an official document. Administrators and representatives of heirs have no right of disposal.
In order to protect the interests of the heirs/community of heirs, the rights of disposal of persons authorized during their lifetime by means of a general power of attorney are restricted. After the death of a client, these persons are only entitled to receive information.

Power of attorney in inheritance cases

If the community of heirs wishes to authorize one or more heirs or third parties to settle their position, a power of attorney in inheritance cases must be issued and signed. The following documents are required for this:

  1. Certified or original certificate of inheritance and official executor's certificate, where an executor has been appointed.
  2. All heirs and executors must prove their identity by means of a copy of their ID card/passport.
  3. All heirs and executors must sign the power of attorney in inheritance cases.

The power of attorney in inheritance cases is issued by your client advisor at the branch office.

The certificates as at date of death required in connection with a client's death can be ordered through your client advisor at the branch.

The form below can be used to order them. Please note that statements of assets (where there is a custody account with holdings) are subject to a fee and all other certificates are issued free of charge. Certificates are always sent to the correspondence address on file with us and are usually issued within five bank working days.

The following documents are usually required to process a client's death:

  • Certified or original certificate of inheritance
  • All heirs must prove their identity with an official identity card, ID or passport. Copies of identification documents can be made free of charge in all UBS branch offices in Switzerland.
  • For executors: official executor's identity card or official executor's certificate.

Note: Special cases must be taken up with the client advisor in your branch office.

According to the basic document, in particular the declaration on the "Conditions for a joint business relationship with joint and several liability of owners", the surviving contractual partner can, as a rule, continue to dispose individually and without restriction of the assets in a joint business relationship (and/or relationship).

In this case, the remaining heirs receive information about the assets until the date of death, but are not entitled to dispose of them.

Note: This rule does not apply to collective accounts (and relationships), which are blocked in the event of a client death.

In the event of client deaths abroad, please contact the relevant client advisor or the nearest branch office.

We will register the client's death in our records and block the customer relationship.