After the death of a loved one, you often find yourself struggling to cope with grief and uncertainty. One of our financial services advisors can help you with the financial aspect of this unsettling period. It’s important to take the process of settling the deceased’s affairs one step at a time.
Settling the estate
- Look for a will
- If there isn’t one, a notary or a local court officer may have to be approached for an administrator to be appointed to handle the estate settlement for complicated estates
- If there is a will, you need to work with the executor named in the will to distribute the assets, deal with the creditors and other tasks
- If you receive a cash gift or property of the estate – ask for advice to understand and fulfill tax obligations coming with them
Notify various interested parties
- You’ll have to contact banks, the Canada Revenue Agency, credit card companies, and their employer’s human resources department, family and friends about the death
- Also, it may be necessary to transfer the shared expenses, rent, loan payment, utilities to your name or have these items paid by the estate
- Keep in mind the deceased’s accounts may be frozen until the estate has been settled
Submit benefit claims
- A thorough inventory of insurance coverage should be made in order to submit the claims promptly
- Other benefits should also be considered: pension benefits, child benefits, income from the deceased’s employer such as vacation pay and bonuses, work-related expenses not yet claimed and group insurance coverage
Updating insurance coverage
- Reviewing the deceased’s insurance coverage at this time is beneficial in many ways. Among them, you may want to choose to either continue under the same plan or replace it with your own individual one
- Update the beneficiaries of your insurance policies and retirement savings plans if the deceased was your named beneficiary.
- By going through this process, many people feel that looking after a departed loved one’s affairs as a final gift to them. It may also make you pause to consider how to make the process easier for your heirs. A little planning on your part can make a big difference.
One of our financial services advisors can assist in helping you take actions in your best interest.