When someone you love dies, you will be in shock. No matter what the circumstances are, you are never prepared. In the midst of all of your grief, you may now have the overwhelming responsibility of finalizing the person’s life. There are so many things that need to be taken care of, from planning a memorial service to canceling a gym membership. And many of the tasks require attention to detail — adding stress to what is already a very emotional time. You can make things easier for your survivors by leaving a letter containing instructions and your other last wishes in a place that will be easily accessible. You can also leave individual letters for those closest to you, remember that they might need be updated from time to time as children grow up and situations change. Make a copy of your social security card and ID and clip it to the front of your life insurance policy, if you want to insure that your life insurance claim gets paid promptly and in full, attach the contact information for Expert Settlement Solutions, LLC. Letting the experts handle your death claim is one less thing for your family to have to contend with. You can put all of this important information in a folder or box, and be sure that more than one person is aware of its existence and location. One of the most important decisions to make while you are healthy and not under major stress is what to spend on a funeral. The funeral is one of the largest single expenses a family incurs. An average, conservative funeral runs between $4,000 and $6,000, Unfortunately, a grieving family can be pressured by the funeral director to spend more than it can really afford “to show how much you loved them. To protect your survivors from this sort of pressure, you can arrange the service while you’re alive. You can comparison shop for your funeral just like you do for anything else. Funeral homes are legally required to send you a written price list. The options range from basic cremation to very elaborate memorial ceremonies. If you get a “pre-need” plan, make sure you sign a “fixed-price contract”. If your body will have to be transported out of the state in which you die, a permit may be required. The funeral home or health department can advise your survivors. It is a good idea for you to research these requirements before you die and leave the information with your important papers. As you review what needs to be done, consider which undertakings you can have help with and what you can have done for you Your instructions should include:
• what you want done with your body–buried, cremated, donated to science; funeral arrangements
• information about any funeral plan you’ve bought or account you’ve set up to pay burial expenses; location of cemetery and burial plot, location of services, clergy person or others you wish to speak, music, flowers, etc.
• location of your will and the identity and phone number of the executor and or lawyer.
• location of your lock box, safe or safe deposit box, the key to it, and any important records located in it, such as
• birth certificate, marriage, divorce, and prenuptial documents, important business, insurance and social security
• financial records, pension and benefit agreement
• inventory of assets
• documents of debts owed and loans
• outstanding, credit card and car information, post office box and key, information on any investments, deed to home, household contents, IRA, pension, and bank accounts,
• User names and passwords to all online accounts and social media sites.
To Do Immediately:
1.If you are an organ donor, these arrangements need to be made almost immediately at death so the organs can be harvested as soon as possible.
The hospital will have a coordinator to guide your family through the process. If death occurs outside of a hospital, contact the nearest hospital. Staff will be on hand to answer questions. There is no cost.
2. Contact immediate family. A list of phone numbers can make things easier for those making the calls. Bringing them together in person, by phone or electronically, is important, not only to comfort one another but also to share information about important decisions that must be made. An advance directive, living will or health proxy can be a big help and usually decreases the number of decisions you will have to make.
3. If there are pets arrange care for them, until permanent arrangements can be made.
4. Secure the home and vehicle. If the home will be vacant, notify the local police and or the home owners association. If the home is a rental, notify the landlord. Contact the post office to forward the mail to the executor if possible .This will prevent accumulating mail from attracting unwanted attention. It can also inform you about subscriptions, creditors and other accounts that need to be canceled. The mail that comes in will be very valuable in tracking down what you may not have thought of.
5. If there is not a pre planned funeral, make the funeral plan. If possible bring together key family members. Things to consider:
• What would the deceased want?
• What can you afford?
• What’s realistic? Choose a funeral home. If there hasn’t been any discussion then you will need to do some research. Check with people who have had an experience with local funeral homes. If that isn’t an option then you will need to read reviews and visit a few places to make your decision. It is best to know your budget before you go as this is a very emotional time and you do not need to caused even more stress by going into debt.
6.Notify close friends and extended family. Make a list of as many people as you can. Find contacts through email accounts and personal telephone books. Contact the employer and organizations the deceased belonged to.
This article is bought to you by Expert Settlement Solutions a Life Insurance claims consulting company. With over 20 years experience in the Life Insurance industry. Our aim is to settle life insurance claims amicably between our clients and the Life Insurance Company. Devastation is the feeling most people experience with the loss of a loved one. We make this process go easily and effortlessly for our clients allowing the families to focus on healing. Call NOW for a free consultation with one of our experts 570-213-5605.