A Checklist For Widows

A Checklist For Widows

Here is a checklist of tasks you’ll need to deal with as a recent widow.

Whether or not you are the executor of the Estate—there are a number of tasks to address.

As soon as it is practical complete this checklist for widows:

  • Make an appointment or have a phone call with your attorney, financial advisor, an accountant, and insurance agent. What you need to remember is that you don’t have to go it alone.
  • Get at least 5 copies of the death certificate.
  • Gather all the important documents such as birth and marriage certificates, powers of attorney, insurance policies, will, employee benefits, social security information and veteran’s benefits, etc.
  • Notify your banking institution(s) of your spouse’s death. Check the safety deposit box.
  • Contact your insurance companies to change life insurance beneficiaries, and health and auto insurance companies to adjust policies.
  • Make sure you have a credit card in your name. Call the credit card company and explain the situation.
  • 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.—Keep paying your bills.
  • Change the title or ownership of the car, house and investment accounts.
  • 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 trust and who will take the 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.

Remember to take it easy on yourself. This isn’t an easy time. Need some encouragement? Read A is for Accomplishing What Needs to Be Done During Widowhood


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