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Nerdy Note: Do debts die with you?

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35 replies 25.5K views


  • glabusglabus Forumite
    2 Posts
    Your post has given ME some further confusion!
    I have had to go into a Debt Management Program (DMP) to sort out? my CC & 1 loan debts and I have been told that my wife could be liable, at least for part of the debt in that she might be required to sell the house!
    Though I was informed that the Compoanies might not cancel fees, interest or other charges I was not warned as to how much extra cost these might add to debts. I am with a Company which offers FREE services but.... another company I contacted for advise afterwards stated that NO company offerred services free and that I might be charged 17.5%. This was untrue!
    I suggest that one walks very carefully into these negotiations and.......
    can you say from whom & how your information re your situation was obtained as I would like to follow up on it

    morrisp6 wrote: »

    I have been given alot of conflicting information about this. My father passed away recently, and i was left to sort out the finances for my mother as she wasn't able to do so.

    There were a number of debts around from credit cards, and debt collection agency, and overdue mortgages etc.. a bit of a mess!

    What i did find though is this:
    If the debt is wholly in the person's name with no other named individuals on it, then it does die with them, credit cards, and personal loans / finance that my father took out in HIS NAME ONLY, were wiped out with the production of a death certifacte.
    Joint debts, mortgage, tax bills, outstanding utility bills etc obviously not, but this was a great relief to say goodbye to these alone.

    And there was no extra insurance on these credit cards either / loans.

    Hope that helps someone.

  • DarksunDarksun Forumite
    1.9K Posts
    RBG wrote: »
    Well I guess most of us in our 20's now will have our student loan taking up most of the value of our assets when we die! I know that my loan goes up by double what I repay every year! And there's no way I'm paying off any more than I have to!

    A student loan from the SLC is written off if you die, or after 25 years if it's still unpaid (for loans 2006 onwards - earlier loans only get written off when the holder reaches 65)
  • morrisp6morrisp6 Forumite
    11 Posts

    I am not going to pretend that i understand the situation properly that you are in, but all i can say is what and where i got mine from.

    My father did not leave a will, which made life more complicated than it could have been, but through dealing with the probate service, and getting letters of administration for the estate these facts came out. As i mentioned in the follow up post this isn't a clear cut area, and there are a number of grey areas, the credit card that my father had was with a major player ( citi ) and the debt ( around 4k ) on this was wiped out almost straight away on production of the death certifacte, actuallly one of there call centre staff told me that no one else was liable to start with ! :)

    I didn't approach any company to sort this out for me, as the surviving family is only very small, obviously the bigger family, and estate the more complicated.

    Check out the link on the 2nd post at 11:06 for more background on what is and isn't liable.

  • jaz_meljaz_mel Forumite
    2 Posts
    Does this rule also apply if you share a joint bank account, and although there is no outstanding debt on the bank account, if any credit or store cards is in debt and is owned by the other joint account holders and is paid from the same bank account is the other account holder liable for that debt?
  • jaz_meljaz_mel Forumite
    2 Posts
    I have a joint bank account with my mum who is 81. As my mum isn't very good at managing her affairs, I was advised by the bank to go for this option as it was simplest.
    Although there is no outstanding debt on the bank account, would I be liable for any outstanding debt on credit/store cards that are in my mums name but get paid via the bank account?
  • What about credit card debt, if the card is only in your name, would one's beneficiaries have to make good these debts ?
  • morrisp6morrisp6 Forumite
    11 Posts
    Simple answer is No. my parents had a Joint mortgage, and Joint Bank account, but this does not affect the fact the the Credit cards are in single names, so no liabilty was passed on via a bank account so you should be absolutely fine.

    Again please note, i am not a solictor, or professional, i just happen to have been through this recently.

  • morrisp6morrisp6 Forumite
    11 Posts

    Credit card debt and HP agreements were the 2 main things that i cleared without having to pay anything towards them.
    Council tax / mortgage ( no life insurance ) / utilty bills, are things that will default to the next of kin / trustee of estate.

  • HazKHazK Forumite
    1 Post
    Sorry but you are wrong. When my late husband passed away, we were separated but not divorced and I have been pursued by his creditors for payment of his debts. Not just the ones I was co-signing but also for things like his utility bills. His children (from a previous marriage) have escaped all this whilst inheriting everything he left behind.
  • trudijtrudij Forumite
    1.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    I am in teh same situation as teh person who is doing it for their mother. My father died on Easter Sunday - and the help we have had from the various companies has been varied to say the least!!

    Sainsburys wanting to see the death certificate before they would change the nectar card over - the Land Registary being happy for us to phone them and transfer things over is one of the more odd things that has happened...

    We were told we wouldnt need probate - then before Legal and General would pay out the small insurance policy we had to get probate....

    we have had almost everything in dads name written off - that includes Halifax,Sainsburys,MBNA and Capital One (when they send me a form they said Im to fill in!) The biggest problem I have had so far is with Citi - dad had an accidental death policy with their company (stonebridge) and they have refused to pay out for him - (apparently choking on a piece of meat isnt accidental:confused: but thats a different story!) following us telling Citi about dads death and sending his death certificate, we had FOUR phone calls on alternate days asking to speak to him,the first two were from the same woman(!) then followed by them sending the men in.... Each time i tolod them that no,they couldnt speak to him as he had died - and they all countered with "you need to send us a copy of the DC".... by the fourth person I was raving - and told them that I was looking at a copy of a letter from them dated a month previously thanking me for sending the DC adn other details, and that if they didnt stop calling us I would be taking further action against Citi as I had been advised that what they were doing was definately grounds for harassment charges to be started...
    My uncle wrote to head office and complained on my mothers behalf about the phone calls - he recieved a letter from another office,adressed to my mother care of his address ( he lives in Kent - we are in Dorset!) so he wrote back pointing out how appalling their customer service was and some other things... we eventually got a letter of apology from another person there saying they wouldnt be telephoning us again...:rolleyes: Goodness knows whats happening with them now - but we have probate stating that the estate value is nil - so theres nothing they can do. The only thing that is possible (but noone tends to do it as it will generally cost moer to impliment than letting it go) is ask for the debt to be put against the value of the equity in the house,so when we sell up,it will have to be paid then. We wait with baited breath for their next move!!!! I want to tell CIti that if they can get Stonebridge to accept the responsibility for the insurance policy we are happy for them to have all the money dad owed....:cool:

    anyway - sorry -0- this became a lot longer than I intended!!!!
    Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup
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