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Money is usually one of the last things on your mind after the death of a spouse, but it is very important. In the days, weeks and months following the death of your loved one, you are at your most vulnerable, you have extra expenses to account for, and you may have to take on financial responsibilities that you’ve never had before.
It’s not surprising then that so many people make some very bad mistakes in the immediate aftermath of a spouse’s death. So that you don’t make the same mistakes, and so you’re able to remain financially stable following a death, we’ve put together a list of the three most common ones here.
Making Big Decisions Too Soon
In the time just after your spouse has died, you’re unlikely to be in the right frame of mind to make any big decisions about your life or your finances. So, instead of making snap decisions, unless they’re absolutely vital. Give yourself some time to think about where any money you may have received (inheritance, life insurance etc.,) would be best spent.
So many people think they are doing the right thing by paying off the mortgage, for example, when actually it leaves them without any cash in the bank, and they begin to sink. So, sit wait a while, get to the point where you can look at things logically and then act.
Not Pursuing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
So many bereaved spouses who would have a case against a third party for the wrongful death of their partners never pursue the matter. Some fail to do so out of grief; some wrongly think that is the life insurance pays out they won’t have much of a case, and some are simply too grief-stricken to even think about such things.
The thing is, you don’t need to do this immediately, nor do you need to do it alone. A good attorney like Attorney Tom Plouff will be able to help you pursue the matter when you’re ready and able. It’s a good idea to do this if you think you have a case because it’s not unusual to be awarded a sum equal to a lifetime’s earnings and that will obviously make life much easier for you in all areas of your financial life.
Going on a Spending Spree
Another common mistake of the bereaved spouse is to try and fill the hole that is missing in their life by going on a spending spree with all of the life insurance/inheritance money that they receive. They think that retail therapy will make them feel better and spend more than they can really afford, they sell the house for less than it’s worth so that can move on and buy a new one or head off on lots of exotic vacations that drain the account.
It’s totally understandable why anyone would do this at such a difficult time, but it can and does lead to financial hardship, so be careful if you find yourself veering in this direction.
Avoid these three major mistakes, and you stand a better chance of being financially sound long into the future.