When a loved one dies
When a loved one dies, it is a time of stress and emotional shock. Yet, the family must take steps to protect the estate.
Home: Change the locks and have the mail changed. Stop the delivery of newspapers. At the time of the funeral, ask a trusted person to be at the residence. The funeral times are often posted, and thieves take advantage of that to strike and clean out the home.
Limit Information in Death Notice: The less the better. If the deceased’s full name, place of birth, date of birth and death and parents’ names are given in the notice, it can give enough information for thieves to take advantage.
Notifications: Notify the Social Security Administration, the Veteran’s Administration (if applicable), banks, investment companies, credit card companies.
Locate the Documents: Locate and secure the estate planning documents. It is most important to locate the originals.