In my experience, personal debt after death is the problem of the creditor. If the person owned property or had some kind of estate the creditor would have recourse but if there is no real property, no money, and just debt, then it is written off by the creditor. Example: When it became obvious that my sister, 45, was not going to survive her cancer I contacted her creditors and explained she was terminally ill and would not be able to continue paying their accounts. All of them were unexpectedly nice and requested a letter from the doctor stating her condition and a death certificate after the event. After they received the death certificates they sent letters stating that the debt was discharged. Same thing happened with my mother. Neither owned property. However, when my husband died, all debt became mine.