After the Death of a Loved One

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Published: February 10, 2012

The bright side of the work we do as a fee only financial advisors is the smiles and thank yous, and the numerous times our clients express how much peace of mind we have brought them.

The downside of our work is when a client, or their parent, passes away.

It’s not only emotionally stressful – it’s a lot of work. And I mean A LOT.

It helps to have instructions to follow during these times. Check out the documents needed checklist put together by After the Fact Final Affairs.

Think you should cancel credit cards right away? Not so fast. Think you know where your loved one kept important papers, and their stash of cash? Think again. You may need to look for valuables in odd places such as jacket pockets, or search for hidden compartments in a desk drawer.

There is so much to do when you lose a loved one, and it’s hard to know where to start or who to turn to. Human nature often makes us want to do it ourselves, but this is one of those items where a little professional assistance can go a long ways. You can hire a professional organizer or pay an attorney for guidance during these times.

For our clients, as their financial advisor, we do as much of the legwork as we can, which involves coordinating with their attorney and CPA, putting in insurance claims, reevaluating cash flow and expenses and helping get accounts re-titled.

But when it comes to dealing with auto titles, bank accounts, credit cards, driver’s licenses, utilities, associations and memberships, leases, credit agencies and all that kind of stuff, that’s where a lot of the leg work comes in.