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Is a child responsible for his parents' debts?

Verified 17 April 2020 - Directorate of Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister), Ministry of Justice

Living parent

There is no obligation for children to pay their parents' debts, whatever their nature: unpaid loans, rent debts, damages... 

Parents are committed to themselves and, as a result, do not commit their children.

In order for children to be responsible for the debts incurred by their parents, they must have committed themselves for them, for example by taking out bail for them. This implies a voluntary (and written) commitment on their part.

Deceased parent (estate)

A child who wishes not to pay the debts of the deceased parent may refuse succession (thelegacy).

However, he is liable for the debts of his deceased relative if he accepts his estate.

The child may also accept the succession up to net assets.. Thus, his personal property is protected in case the debts are greater than the property left by the deceased. An inventory of the deceased's property is then required. It must be filed with the court registry within 2 months from the declaration of acceptance of the succession.