When a loved one passes away, it can be a very sad and difficult time for the rest of the family. This can be made harder by the fact that there is often a huge amount to sort out in terms of the decedent's estate, which is often left to one person by way of the named executor of the will.
Depending on the level of wealth and amount of assets that the person had while alive, sorting out their estate and attendant finances can be a lengthy and difficult process. As the executor of the will, you may need to apply for a grant of probate to deal with the finances and assets of the decedent, which you can do with probate advice from the Co-op legal services team.
Tips on dealing with the finances of a deceased loved one
Dealing with the finances and the estate of a deceased loved one can seem like a daunting task, particularly as you may still be grieving over your loss. However, it is something that needs to be done and a few tips that could help include the following.
Make sure you make copies of the death certificate: You will generally find that a lot of places will ask for a copy of the death certificate when you are trying to sort out finances and other matters relating to the estate. You should therefore make sure you take multiple copies of the original so that you can send them off as and when necessary.
Apply for a grant of probate: Depending on the financial circumstances and assets of the decedent, you may need to apply for a grant of probate from the Probate Registry to deal with the financial affairs of the deceased. You should do this sooner rather than later, as you have one year from the date of death to get the estate sorted otherwise you may have to pay interest on whatever has not been distributed.
Speak to relevant officials: If the deceased had an accountant or solicitor, it is worth speaking to them for assistance, as you will be able to get valuable information that will make it easier to sort out the finances of the deceased. Also, consider enlisting legal services yourself such as legal services from the Co-op, as this will give you access to valuable advice and assistance when you need it.
Get financial documents and details: In order to ensure you can deal with the finances of the deceased you need to make sure you get relevant documentation and paperwork together. This includes everything from information about tax and national insurance through to information on stocks and shares, insurance policies, property deeds, bank and financial accounts, pensions, benefits and business documents if they were self employed. You also need to make sure you find out details relating to the debts and other financial liabilities of the deceased, such as loans, credit card debts, mortgage information and bills.
These tips can help to make sure that sorting out the finances of your deceased loved one can be done as quickly and painlessly as possible.