After losing a loved one, our minds are often preoccupied with grieving the loss and seeking support from our family. Not knowing what to do with their finances and estate becomes a heavy burden when grieving. The final wishes of the loved ones are to be respected and executed ensuring the family bonds are not damaged. Prior knowledge of the steps to be taken in the eventuality helps to a very great extent. The probate attorney can be consulted to put together the list of steps to be taken.
These are some of the things one should be aware of after the death of a loved one.
Any existing power of attorney becomes invalid
Most people are not aware of the fact that a power of Marrs probate attorney ceases to be valid after the death of the person. Only the personal representative or the executor who has been appointed by the court of law are permitted to act on behalf of the deceased. The letters testamentary or letters of administration have to be obtained to wrap up the financial affairs of the deceased.
Obtain several copies of the Death Certificate
If your spouse has passed away and you are the executor then you must visit the office of the city clerk or the vital statistics office in your locality and obtain a minimum of 10 copies of Death Certificates. It would be better if you can get up to 20 copies as most organizations, banks, financial institutions, Unions, Creditors, government agencies, membership clubs and other such organizations will insist on producing the Death Certificate even before they talk to you about your loved one’s financial affairs. You must obtain the Death certificate copies before approaching the banks, financial institutions and others. Even the insurance companies will not pay any claims in the absence of a Death Certificate.
Consult a Probate attorney irrespective of whether you hire them or not
Most of the heirs of the deceased desist hiring legal help keeping in mind the cost that may be involved. It would be a wrong way of handling because the cost of hiring would be insignificant compared to the professional advice that in most cases saves an estate a lot of money that could be in the thousands of dollars. The process will be smooth and much quicker when handled by the probate attorney and will save the family members from potential liabilities.
Obtaining and securing of Pertinent Documents
The lack of knowledge, unsystematic record keeping, inadequate provisioning results in lots of stress and wasted time in tending to the financial affairs of the loved one who has passed away. The best advice to anyone is that they should organize their documents and keep them in order and create an inventory. These documents and inventory must be secured in a safe place and the knowledge of it must be shared with one of the confidantes. This can save a lot of time and avoid stress to the family members.
All sorts of stress and complications can easily be avoided if one takes care to secure the relevant documents when alive and upon the death consulting a probate attorney to handle all the matters of finance and estate. To know more about this, contact us today!