Published on August 22nd, 2013 | by Pete0
Financial Tips on Dealing With Bereavement
There are few things – if anything at all – more difficult in life than losing a loved one. Along with feelings of sadness and despair, comes the responsibility to oversee the funeral and necessary procedures that come with the process of death, as well as the need to eventually, continue with your own life. Adding to all of that however, are the large costs often necessary to manage the duties that follow a bereavement. Here are a few financial tips on dealing with bereavement.
You should be aware of the relevant allowances that accompany the death of a partner. The passing away of a wife, husband or civil partner may render you eligible for a bereavement payment in the form of a tax-free lump-sum of 2000GBP.
Widows can claim Bereavement Allowance on a weekly basis for 52 weeks from the date of their partner’s death. Furthermore, those with kids or people financially dependant on them, will be entitled to more money to help them deal with the financial problems that can come with the death of a loved one.
Sometimes the biggest financial problem that follows a close person’s death is through one’s own struggle to continue life as normal. Failing to generate money yourself could be the biggest financial problem that comes with a death, and you must therefore be prepared to continue functioning and working hard in one’s own business or occupation – once you’ve had enough time to grieve.
Nobody can tell you how long you should be grieving for and different cultures and religions will have different customs in regards to how long is acceptable, however if your grieving is seriously financially hurting you, it may be best to seek grief counseling in order to help get yourself back into your normal routine.
Dealing with the Deceased Finances
A deceased person may have some outstanding debts to settle or assets to distribute. These may be manageable by yourself or the family of the deceased, but are normally the legal responsibility of either the ‘executor’ or ‘administrator’. The former is someone stated in the will to deal with the deceased’s wishes, while the latter is the deceased’s next of kin, in the advent of there not being any will.
On the subject of a will, it is important to remember to look for a will – if possible – soon after the death. This may carry financial instructions as well as funeral and burial wishes.
There are a number of companies such as RIFT Wills that can help interpret wills for you and also help you create your own.
Register the Death
You must register the death of your partner within five days from the death date. Finalizing a funeral cannot happen until this has been done, while a death certificate is necessary for dealing with financial institutions like banks and insurance companies.
It usually costs around 4-10GBP, although it can cost more – 7-15GBP – if more copies are needed at a later date. It’s therefore best to buy a handful of copies.
The law in Scotland is slightly different to other areas of the United Kingdom and those in Scotland will have eight days to register a death.