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Where to start when you lose a loved one

Where to start when you lose a loved one

We know how hard it is to lose a loved one, so we want to make it just a little bit easier on you. That’s why we compiled a list of things you’ll need to do when your loved one passes away. Grief can be overwhelming, so feel free to print off this list or bookmark the page for future reference.

  1. It is likely you will need 6 death certificates. The funeral home will typically provide these.
  2. Contact a lawyer or work with the court to get an Affidavit of Small Estates or Personal Representative Papers (provided when a Probate Estate is opened with the court).
    1. If an Estate account is needed, apply for an EIN at
  3. Notify Life Insurance
  4. Locate a Will or Trust papers, if applicable.
  5. Notify the Social Security Administration at 1-877-274-5421 if the funeral home hasn’t already done so.
  6. Notify the decedent’s bank(s) to update and/or close accounts(s).
    1. If applicable, locate their safe deposit box and key.
  7. Close all credit card accounts.
  8. If applicable, notify their financial advisor.
  9. If applicable, contact the Post Office to forward mail.
  10. Contact Health Insurance companies to stop coverage.
  11. Contact other Insurance companies as needed for supplemental, auto, home, etc.
  12. If applicable, contact their cell phone company to discontinue services.
  13. Contact Utility companies (gas, electricity, sewer/water, garbage, telephone, cable, internet) to update billing information or cancel services, if applicable.
    1. If residence is unoccupied, you may want to leave the electricity, gas, and water on and change the locks.
    2. If working with a utility company that is member-owned, update payee information for future capital credit payouts.
  14. Contact their tax preparer to assist with preparing the decedent’s taxes.
  15. You may want to notify the 3 credit reporting agencies (CRAs) in writing with a copy of the death certificate. When a death notice is created by one agency, they notify the other two. The Social Security Administration periodically notifies the three CRAs of deceased individuals, but you may want to notify them sooner or obtain a copy of the decedent’s credit reports to see what accounts need to be closed. Visit the CRA website for additional information needed in the notice.
    1. Trans Union: 1-800-916-8800; PO Box 1000, Chester, PA 19022-1000;
    2. Equifax: 1-800-685-1111; PO Box 740241, Atlanta, GA 30374-0241;
    3. Experian: 1-888-397-3742; PO Box 2104, Allen, TX 75013-0949;

Disclaimer: This is not a comprehensive list; it is meant to be used as a starting point. Some things may or may not be applicable to you or your situation. Seek legal advice from a licensed attorney to assist with any questions. This is not intended to be legal advice, and First National Bank is not able to provide legal advice.

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