debt Tag

29 Dec Debt Does Not Die When You Do, Part Two

Surprise, you're dead. Distinct from 'zombie debt' which should be dead, but refuses to die, your debt does not automatically die when you do. Your family or heirs could be forced to pay the bills that you didn't (or couldn't) pay before you moved on to another plane of existence. You might want to read Part One of this series.

So the widow said to me, "Don't you just write a letter to the credit card companies and make them stop sending bills?" It's not always that easy. If you have a debt that is only in your name and you die without any assets, then maybe those debts would die too. But that is a loaded statement. Let's break it down.

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28 Dec Debt Does Not Die When You Do, Part One

Do you know what your family would do without you? Do they know where to find information necessary to pay your bills? Do you or your family believe that your debts will go away if something happens to you? This is not 'estate planning', it is emergency planning. You and a select group of people around you need basic information on how to handle your finances if you can't.

Recently a good friend and family member died. People die all the time, but this time was different because it was someone my own age. At the same time, a client visited whose husband died unexpectedly at the age of 32. In both cases, the widows had no idea of their family finances and expected that with the death of their husband somehow the family debt would go away.

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