Preparing for the Future: Death of a Spouse

Follow these steps for financial security from the team at Southern Cremations and Funerals

The death of a spouse is emotionally devastating. Death is not a subject many people want to think about, especially when it comes to a husband or wife. However, planning for the death of a spouse is an important precaution, helping you stay financially secure should something unexpected occur. It will also simplify the process so, if your spouse does pass away, you can focus on grieving and getting through a very difficult time.

The expert team at Southern Cremations and Funerals in Marietta has compiled these four easy steps to help you financially prepare yourself for the death of a spouse.

Update Paperwork

You should make sure each of you has an updated will, power-of-attorney and living will that reflects your wants, needs and accurate personal information. Everything should be written down and clearly spelled out to avoid any surprises later. Your wishes should not come as a surprise to your spouse, so make sure they know in advance what exactly each document says and where they can easily get to it. Keep a copy at home in a safe, in addition to electronic copies and one on file with your lawyer.

This is also a good time to check that your life insurance, retirement accounts and other documents reflect the accurate beneficiaries. You don’t want an old 401K getting help up in court because you opened it before you were married, or benefits going to an ex-spouse because you didn’t update the paperwork. Check and double check everything, and keep it in a safe place.

Centralize the Finances

If you have multiple accounts, investments, and debts that are spread out with multiple companies, try to centralize them or at least keep a running list of where everything is located. The remaining spouse needs to know what bills need to be paid, where the money is kept, and what investments need to be monitored. This is also a good time to ensure that everyone is on the same page with the finances and understands the plan.

If one spouse has always handled the finances, the other person may need help, or the process that worked for one may not make sense to the other. You may want to consider hiring a professional to help, or work on simplifying the number of accounts and investments to something more manageable.

Create a List of Logins and Passwords

In addition to knowing where all the financial information is, they must also be able to access them. Make sure you provide them with the logins and passwords for each account, in addition to the password for the email account. Show them how to login and where to access all the information they may need for each and every account. This is good practice and gives them a chance to ask any questions they may have once they are actually checking each account.

In addition to passwords, make sure that they can answer any security questions that may be asked if they forget the password or are accessing the site from a different computer. While the name of your first roommate in college and the street where you grew up is easy for you, they may not remember those facts about you and get locked out of the account.

Make Funeral Arrangements Easy

Help your spouse by preplanning the type of funeral that you want, specifying that you want to be cremated, and writing down what you want done with your ashes. Clearly picking out and telling your spouse how you would like to be honored after you have passed will make your passing and funeral arrangements much easier for them.

Southern Cremations and Funerals in Marietta, Georgia, offers cremation memorialization services in addition to urns and other commemorative services. To learn more about your options, call us at (770) 766-5067 or fill out our online contact form.