Bereavement: How to manage the finances of someone who’s passed away

Bereavement Financial Management The loss of a close relative or loved one can be an overwhelming experience. With loss comes grief and a range of difficult financial decisions and details. At such a stressful time, you may need support and guidance to help you take the right steps.

The first things you need to do:

When you lose someone close to you, there will be a number of legal matters to take care of that will make it easier for you to begin settling their financial affairs.

You might be faced with a number of payments requiring immediate attention, including:

  • Gas, electricity and water bills
  • Loans, credit cards or a mortgage.

It’s important to take time to notify each provider, even if bills being paid from a joint account will continue to be paid by you individually.

Prioritising the finances

Once you’ve managed any pressing payments and bills, you can begin to consider other financial arrangements, such as updating mortgage details, bank accounts and insurance policies.

Gathering the following documentation will make sure you have everything in place to deal quickly with a range of relevant parties:

  • A will
  • National Insurance details
  • Bank, building society, savings accounts and certificates
  • Details of any stocks and shares
  • State benefits
  • Insurance policy details (including car, health, home, life, etc)
  • Property deeds
  • Mortgage deeds or rental contracts
  • Details of any debts (including credit cards, store cards, loans, etc).

If you are informing organisations by phone, it’s helpful to have account or reference numbers to hand before calling. Most will ask to see a death certificate and guide you through what to do next.

YOUR NEXT STEPS

Updating your finances

Depending on your circumstances, you may need to review and update some of your own financial arrangements. For example:

  • Your will
  • Life insurance and critical illness cover
  • Beneficiaries of any pensions or investments.

If your husband, wife or civil partner has died you may also be able to claim bereavement benefits to help ease any financial worries you may face.

Help and support

Settling financial affairs can be difficult for bereaved relatives and partners, so it can be helpful to seek specialist support from experienced advisers.

We have dedicated bereavement specialists who are trained to take you through everything you need to think about from a financial point-of-view. You can arrange to meet with a bereavement specialist by visiting your local Lloyds Bank branch or calling us on 0800 015 0012.

Find out more

  • The NHS can provide useful information and support during bereavement.
  • The Citizens Advice Bureau offers free advice about legal matters along with advice on where to find counselling and support.
  • The Government provides practical information about the actions you need to take, including information about the ‘Tell us once’ service.
  • Grief Encounter helps children and their families cope with the loss of someone close to them.
  • The Money Advice Service has a useful list of all the things you should consider if a partner or spouse dies.