A is for Accomplishing What Needs to Be Done for Widows

A is for Accomplishing What Needs to Be Done for Widows

A is for Accomplishing What Needs to Be Done during Widowhood

Becoming a widow is painful, devastating and stressful.  You will not only experience emotional sorrow  with the loss of a loved one. You now have to face financial and legal decisions on your own.
Taking care of your financial affairs is an important priority as a widow.

Here is a list of things you will need to do after becoming a widow:

  • As soon as it is practical, make an appointment with your attorney, financial advisor and accountant.
  • Gather all important documents such as death certificate, birth and marriage certificates, powers of attorney, insurance policies, will, employee benefits, social security, veteran’s benefits, etc.
  • Notify your banking institution(s) of your spouse’s death.
  • Contact insurance companies to change beneficiaries if necessary.Have your financial advisor change joint investments.
  • Change name with health insurance company and auto insurance company.
  • Put credit card in your name or get a new one and cancel the joint card
  • Change titles with the motor vehicle department and any other jointly owned property.
  • 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.
  • 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 can trust. Its important for them to take 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.

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.

Answers from AZ