Tax Guru-Ker$tetter Letter
Tuesday, December 17, 2002
While it sounds cold hearted to say this, it is a fact that when someone passes away, that person has it easy. Those that are left behind suffer much more, both in the emotional loss, as well as the overwhelming burden of tasks that have to be dealt with to make sure nothing is overlooked. Even when the death is not a big surprise, it's hard for those left behind to know everything they need to take care. As I explained in this article from five years ago, the financial spouse is usually the first to go, leaving the non-financial spouse in the dark.
A new very handy resource is The Survivor Assistance Handbook, a 44 page booklet written by Certified Financial Planner Mark Colgan detailing all of the little things that a person needs to take care of after someone close to them passes away. I first learned of this booklet in this article on the FoxNews website. I ordered a copy from Mark's website and was very impressed with it. Mark's checklists of things to take care of after a person passes away is the most complete I have seen, even including such things as returning library books and videos that the decedent had out. At $14.95 plus postage for a single copy, it's a bargain compared to the potential cost of overlooking even the smallest detail. Mark is also encouraging bulk sales for gifts with wholesale prices of $9.95 each in lots of 25 or $7.95 each in lots of 100.