The shock of losing a spouse is perhaps the toughest emotional adjustment for anyone in their lives. The financial decisions that follow the loss of your partner can also be immense and immediate. It is easy to become paralyzed and overwhelmed with what needs to be done, and when.
Plan for Unexpected Loss
If your spouse is still alive, it is never too early to discuss the issues that are important to both of you and plan for the unexpected loss of your partner. This could include the following:
Moving Forward from Your Loss (and When)
While it helps to have these initial plans in place, preparation only gets you so far. There can still be a sense of denial when a loved one passes away, not just from the emotional loss but from being overwhelmed by the questions of “what happens now?” and “how can I do it all?”.
Here’s the good news: Not everything needs to be figured out or completed immediately after your spouse is gone. Instead, write down your thoughts and concerns, and then break down your list into chunks of time to ease your burden.
For example, these may be some of the most important issues to immediately address during the first few days after the loss of a partner:
In the following weeks, take time out for yourself to grieve privately and with people closest to you. Do not jump into life-changing decisions too soon. However, you may want to begin working on some administrative items on your list, for example:
In the following months, you can start to tidy up other financial loose ends on your list, such as the following:
Preparing for an unexpected loss and managing loss can be emotional and daunting. Do not go at it alone. Modera Wealth Management, LLC can help you establish and manage your estate, investment, retirement, and insurance planning efforts. We can provide you a one-stop shop to a team of unbiased experts. Let us become a trusted resource to you, both before and after significant life changes, such as widowhood.
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