Your husband just passed away. Now what do you do?
Becoming a widow is painful, devastating and stressful. In addition to the emotional sorrow that comes with the loss of a loved one, you now have to face financial and legal decisions on your own. But you need to remember that you don’t have to go it alone. You and your spouse have spent a lifetime paying various experts to handle different financial aspects of your lives. Now is the time to use their expertise. Taking care of your financial affairs is an important priority as a widow. Your financial planner can help you pull together expert advice from a group of professionals such as accountants, attorneys and insurance agents that meet your specific needs.
A word of caution—many people will be very well intended to try and help you. But you really should depend on the professionals that you have been working with before your husband passed away. You may have never liked the agent, advisor or lawyer—but get their advice don’t make major changes and then research and interview who you want to work with in the future. While most people are honest and trustworthy, there are scam artists out there that will try to take advantage of a grieving widow. Never give your personal or financial information to anyone that you did not contact first.
Please do not relinquish your control of your financial matters—even if you are completely devastated. It may take time to bring you up to speed but you can do it especially with the help of professionals.
Check out my Checklist for Widows.