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After Your Loved One Has Passed

Updated on February 19, 2014
Dog Enjoys Beautiful Sunset.
Dog Enjoys Beautiful Sunset. | Source

I don’t want to dwell on the financial part of losing someone, but I wasn’t informed as well as I should have been and consequently made some financial mistakes. They were my fault, and no one else’s.

If your loved one receives Social Security, you need to call them upon your loved one’s death; you don’t have to wait for the Death Certificate. There are a few things to keep in mind if your loved one receives a monthly Social Security check. Their check must be sent back if your loved one didn’t live through the full month. I’ll use my mom as an example. My mom passed away on January 30th. The Social Security check that was deposited in the bank at the beginning of February (Which was payment for January), had to be returned because my mom didn’t live to February 1st. Your loved one has to live through the entire month that the Social Security check is being paid for.

The Death Benefit of $255.00, that Social Security offers, will only be given to the spouse, or a dependent child of the deceased.

If your loved one has a Life Insurance policy, make sure it is current on the payments. You need to find out who the beneficiary is, or have proof of having Power of Attorney. Be aware that your loved one could have taken out a loan on the policy; if so, that will alter the amount of the death benefit.

You don’t really want to think about money matters when you’re grieving over the loss of a loved one, but there’s no getting around it. After going through this passed six weeks since my mom died, I can’t stress enough how important it is to have a Life Insurance policy.

There’s nothing easy about losing someone you love. The only consolation is that they’re not suffering anymore. But for the loved ones left behind it can be a real nightmare, especially if financial problems factor in, believe me, I know. That’s why I’m writing this, I wanted to share what I was faced with, so that you would be better informed than I was.

I’ll leave you with something that I had to keep reminding myself of when I was so frustrated at what was happening. The most important thing is that you took care of your loved one. That’s all that matters, and that’s all that’s going to matter years from now when you look back on this time of your life. Everything else will get worked out.

May 21, 2013

I have to add something that has come to my attention in the passed few days. If your loved one had Medical as a supplement to their insurance, you have to notify them within 90 days upon your loved one’s death. They require a death certificate, a bank statement, and any other financial information about your loved one; any property, vehicle, Life Insurance policy, stocks, retirement etc… You will need to provide copies of anything financial. They also require information on the spouse, living or deceased. You’ll need a death certificate, and social security number.

February 2014 - One Year Later

A little more than a year has passed since my mom died. As I look back, I’m so very thankful that my mom had made a written list of everything that I was going to need to take care of upon her passing. I think that everyone should have a to-do list ready for their loved ones, it really does make a very difficult time easier.

My mom wrote down the following:

Her life insurance policy number and the phone number to call. They only required a copy of the Death Certificate not an original.

Her Social Security number and the phone number to call. They didn’t require a Death Certificate.

Medi-cal number and the phone number to call. (I thought this was connected with Social Security so I didn’t call them, but I should have gotten in touch with them within 90 days of mom’s passing.) Medi-cal will mail you information on what to send them. They will require only a copy of the Death Certificate.

I couldn’t do anything about mom’s bank account until after 30 days of her death, which was the bank’s policy. They only required a copy of the Death Certificate.

Mom didn’t have any credit cards but had she of, she would have written down the card number and phone number to call. I don’t know if they would require an original or just a copy of the Death Certificate, more than likely just a copy, but you should find out a head of time so that you can write down how many Death Certificates to have the Funeral Home order.

My mom really helped me through the process by being so organized and having a to-do list for me to go by, and she had all of her legal and financial papers/policies in one place. I never wanted to talk to mom about what to do at her passing, she tried numerous times to discuss things with me, but it was a conversation that I didn’t want to have. So, in spite of how difficult I was being, Mom made sure to have everything in order of what I was going to need to take care of. She was taking care of me one final time.


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