Financial Do’s and Don’ts Following the Death of a Spouse

Financial Decisions for Widows

When you’re mourning the death of your spouse it’s difficult to think about finances. However, there comes a time when financial decisions have to be made. Here are some tips that can help you take control of your financial life.

Do not make any immediate major financial decisions. Whether you’re thinking about selling your home, paying off the mortgage or providing large gifts to family members or charity, wait several months before making any significant financial decisions. You need to give yourself time to be able to think clearly and intentionally so you make the best choices for you and your family. Do not rush.

Get a handle on your budget. In the immediate future, you need to account for your monthly expenses and the liquid assets available to pay your bills. Work with your advisor to create a simple plan for the first year. This buys you time for analyzing your long-term financial situation and re-assessing your goals.

Do a financial clean up. Apply for and collect funds you’re entitled to such as life insurance proceeds, social security survivor benefits and veteran’s benefits. Retitle assets to your name and make sure that you and your family have appropriate health insurance, life insurance and disability coverages.

Hold a family meeting. Communication and support are important at this time in your life. During a family meeting, share your thoughts and talk about your situation, being open and honest about where you are in your financial life at this moment.

Contact your advisors. Surveys show that widows who work with a financial advisor have greater confidence in their financial future. Your Luma Wealth advisor will work with your accountant, attorney and other advisors to create a long-term financial plan that helps you feel secure. Also, your attorney can help you update your will, durable and health care power of attorney and beneficiary designations.


Luma Wealth provides the education and support of a caring community that can help you get through this tough transition. Contact your Luma Wealth advisor for your immediate and long-term wealth planning needs.

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