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After the Death of a Loved One Thumbnail

After the Death of a Loved One

The loss of a loved one is one of the most emotionally challenging times in life. Unfortunately, navigating the ins and outs of financial matters for your loved ones can also be overwhelming. This is why it is so important to have a plan in place in advance. This includes having all your investment, tax and estate planning information housed with a trusted advisor. When you find yourself in this situation, please know that you are not alone. Here is a guide to help get you started.

1. Take Time to Grieve

Before delving into financial decisions, it's crucial to allow yourself the space and time to grieve. Loss affects each person differently, and there's no set timeline for healing. Lean on your support system, whether it's family, friends, or a counselor. Prioritize self-care and give yourself permission to process your emotions at your own pace.

2. Find Someone To Help

We hit on this in the opening paragraph, but it is essential that you find someone to help you gather the information and serve as a sounding board. A trusted advisor can offer support, expertise, and a clear path forward as you navigate the financial implications of your loss. Having someone to sit on the phone with you to call various providers and help you think about how to best handle the situation can be invaluable.

3. Gather Important Documents

Once you feel ready, start gathering essential financial documents. These include trusts, wills, insurance policies, bank statements, investment accounts, and any other pertinent paperwork. Organizing these documents will provide clarity and help you understand the full extent of your financial situation.

4. Assess Immediate Financial Needs

In the immediate aftermath of a loss, it's essential to address any pressing financial needs. This may include funeral expenses, outstanding bills, and managing day-to-day expenses. Lean on your support network for assistance and consider seeking guidance from a financial advisor to help navigate this process.

5. Review Beneficiary Designations

Take the time to review beneficiary designations on all financial accounts, including life insurance policies, retirement accounts, and bank accounts. Ensure that these designations are up-to-date and reflect your current wishes.

6. Assess Your Financial Situation

With the immediate needs addressed, it's time to assess your long-term financial situation. Take stock of your income, expenses, assets, and liabilities. Create a budget that reflects your current circumstances and consider how your financial goals may need to be adjusted in light of the loss.

7. Take One Step at a Time

Above all, remember to be gentle with yourself as you navigate this challenging time. The road to financial recovery will take time, but by taking one step at a time and seeking support when needed, you can find solace and stability amidst the storm.

We understand the profound impact of loss and are here to offer our support every step of the way. Our team provides compassionate guidance and personalized solutions to help you rebuild and move forward with confidence. You are not alone.

Authored by Stephen Blahovec and Michael Rausch of North River Wealth Advisors.  We are an independent, fee-only financial planning and investment management firm located in Pittsburgh, PA servicing clients locally and across the country.  To learn more, contact us here.

This content is developed by North River Wealth Advisors from sources believed to be providing accurate information. Please consult legal or tax professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation. The opinions expressed and material provided are for general information and should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security.