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Withdrawal/return of a disposition of property upon death from special official custody

If you have placed a testamentary disposition (e.g. a will or a contract of inheritance) in special official custody with the court or if it has been deposited there by the notary at your instigation, you can have it returned to you from the special official custody. This request can be made at any time. If you have made the disposition of property upon death jointly with your spouse or civil partner, it can only be returned to both of you at your mutual request. If you have concluded an inheritance contract, all contracting parties must request its return. In certain cases, withdrawal from official custody also means revocation of the deposited disposition of property upon death, e.g. in the case of notarial wills. Therefore, in these constellations, the testator must be capable of making a will when the request for return is made. The request can also be made by a deputy. However, the restitution can only be made to the testator himself.

Process flow

If you wish to withdraw a disposition upon death from special official custody, it is advisable to proceed as follows:

  • Please contact the probate court responsible for you and make an appointment.
  • If you have testified jointly, all testators must submit the application and also accept the disposition upon death jointly. This also applies mutatis mutandis if you have concluded an inheritance contract. Then all contracting parties must submit the application.
  • Please bring your identity card and, if available, the deposit slip with you to the appointment.
  • In the event of the return of the disposition upon death, the judicial officer may be responsible for the order. Your testability is checked. This is because, under certain circumstances, the withdrawal from official custody also has the effect of revoking the deposited disposition upon death.
  • The court reports the return to the Central Register of Wills.

Who should I contact?

The competent local court is the one with jurisdiction pursuant to § 344 FamFG.


  • If possible, appear in person; however, the request for return from special official custody can also be made in writing or by a representative. However, the actual handover can only be made to you personally.
  • Actual possibility of identification by presentation of identity card or passport with certificate of registration.
  • If applicable, testamentary capacity
  • A joint will may only be returned to both spouses/partners.
  • The return of an inheritance contract can only be made jointly to all contracting parties.

Which documents are required?

  • Identity card or passport with certificate of registration
  • Deposit certificate (presentation is not mandatory, but will make it easier to find your disposition of death).

What are the fees?


Fee: free of charge

What deadlines do I have to pay attention to?


Processing duration

Usually the matter is settled at the first appearance.

Applications / forms

Forms required: No

Online procedure possible: No

Written form necessary: No

Personal appearance required: Yes You may be represented when making the application or you may make the application in writing. However, the return of the disposition of death can only be made to you personally.


If the restitution to the testator is refused, the judicial officer decides by order, § 38 FamFG. The testator can lodge an appeal against the refusal for a limited period of time, §§ 58 et seq., 63 FamFG, 11 RPflG.

If, according to state law, a clerk of the court was functionally responsible instead of the judicial officer, a reminder must be filed analogously to § 573 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

Technically approved by

Lower Saxony Ministry of Justice


The text was automatically translated based on the German content.

competent Bodies

Amtsgericht Papenburg
Address: Hauptkanal links 28 , 26871 Papenburg
Postal address: Post Office Box 1152 , 26851 Papenburg
Telephone: 04961 924-0
Fax: 04961 924-155

Data protection information

Landkreis Emsland
Address: Ordeniederung 1 , 49716 Meppen
Postal address: Post Office Box 15 62 , 49705 Meppen
Telephone: 05931 44-0
Fax: 05931 44-3621
Transport Connection:
Station Haltestelle Kreishaus
Bus: 993

Building Access
elevator available, wheelchair-accessible
bank account:
recipients: Landkreis Emsland
bank: Emsländische Volksbank
IBAN: DE26266600600120050000
recipients: Landkreis Emsland
bank: Sparkasse Emsland
IBAN: DE39266500010000001339
recipients: Landkreis Emsland
bank: Postbank Hannover
IBAN: DE36250100300012132306


Marc-André Burgdorf
responsible for:
Bernd Otten (Datenschutzbeauftragter)
Telephone: 05931 44-1605
Fax: 05931 44-391605
responsible for:

Stadt Papenburg - Rechnungsprüfung
Postal address: Post Office Box 1755 , 26857 Papenburg
Address: Hauptkanal rechts 68/69, 26871 Papenburg
Telephone: 04961 82-320
Building Access
elevator available, wheelchair-accessible

Landesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz Niedersachsen
Address: Prinzenstraße 5, 30159 Hannover
Telephone: +49 511 12045-00
Fax: +49 511 12045-99

Source: Serviceportal Niedersachsen (Portalverbund des Bundes und der Länder)