When money is the
last thing on your mind

The death of a spouse or partner, whether sudden or following a long illness, can be shattering. Grief, turmoil and emotional vulnerability make dealing with complicated financial matters the absolute last thing any bereaved partner should feel like doing.

And yet sadly, coping with the financial aftermath of a partner’s death, and then adjusting to financial life as a single person, is something every widow or widower must face – sooner or later.

If, as is often the case, the deceased partner had single-handedly managed all the household finances, it can be utterly overwhelming for the surviving partner to understand everything, let alone make important decisions. If ownership of a business was involved, matters become even more challenging and stressful.

It’s easier said than done but the critical thing is to not feel pressured – even by well-meaning family members or business associates – into making quick financial decisions just to ‘get it done’ and ‘move on’. In the midst of an avalanche of helpful (and not so helpful) suggestions, directives and ideas from family and friends, it’s refreshing and reassuring to get outside help from an experienced professional.

More than just
financial advice

Fiducian’s financial planners really come into their own in helping clients through life’s most difficult times. Some of our financial planners become mentors, counsellors, and even close friends with their clients while steering them through the financial ramifications of the loss of a partner.

In purely practical financial terms,
our planners can help

  • Advise on which financial documents (such as insurance policies, superannuation accounts, bank and tax details) will be needed to administer the deceased’s will, and how to round them up
  • Assess if you’re entitled to any insurance policy payouts or superannuation fund beneficiary payments
  • How to track down details of investments, shareholdings and other assets
  • Tell you which government agencies you may need to notify about your partner’s death
  • Advise on the process for managing your deceased partner’s estate and distributing their assets in accordance with their will, including recommending when and how you’ll need to engage a solicitor
  • Inform you of any effect of your partner’s death on your age pension or other government benefits – and what you may need to do.

Coping with the loss of a partner is difficult enough. Grief, shock and sadness shouldn’t be made worse by piling financial worries on top. During such a difficult time, it makes sense to let a financial planner ease that burden at least.

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