A Checklist For Widows

 Here is a checklist for you to deal with as a recent widow. Whether or not you are the executor of the Estate—there are a number of tasks to address.

As soon as it is practical,

  • Make an appointment or have a phone call with your attorney, financial advisor and accountant and insurance agent. What you need to remember is that you don’t have to go it alone.
  • Get at least 5 copies of the death certificates—
  • Gather all the important documents such as birth and marriage certificates, powers of attorney, insurance policies, will, employee benefits, social security information and veteran’s benefits, etc.
  • Notify your banking institution(s) of your spouse’s death. Check the safety deposit box.
  • Contact your insurance companies to change life insurance beneficiaries, and health and auto insurance companies to adjust policies
  • Do a credit check through annualcreditreport.com
  • Make sure you have a credit card in your name. Call the credit card company and explain the situation.
  • Request a social security benefit if you are eligible.
  • Prepare an estimate of all of your expenses including any children’s education expenses and financial liabilities.—Keep paying your bills
  • Change the title or ownership of the car , house and investment accounts
  • Designate a new Health Care Power of Attorney for yourself.
  • Update your will.
  • Before you invest any life insurance money you receive, make sure you have a financial advisor that you trust and who will take the time to explain the pros and cons of your investments to help you towards long term financial security.
  • Establish a support network with people you have confidence in and can help you during this critical point in your life. They can be professionals, a family member or a trustworthy friend.

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About Ann Zuraw

Ann Zuraw, the voice behind "Chicks, Chat and Change", is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®), and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA™). If you have comments on this post contact Ann Zuraw

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