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Can a debt collector contact you after a loved one dies?

When a loved one passes away, it goes without saying that it will take quite some time to get your life back on track. As you grieve, you may be responsible for tackling a variety of tasks.

Don't be surprised if a debt collector contacts you in an attempt to discuss a debt your loved one was carrying.

If this happens, there are a few things you need to do:

  • Provide the debt collector with the contact information of the person's personal representative.

  • Don't provide personal information. Many people run scams in which they reach out to relatives in an attempt to dupe them when they're vulnerable.

  • Learn more about what it will take to resolve the matter. If you're the personal representative, you may want to discuss the debt with the debt collector. Ask him or her for more information on the type of debt, the balance, and how to best deal with it.

The last thing you want to deal with is a debt collector contacting you after the death of a loved one, but don't be surprised if this happens.

In the event that a debt collector contacts you, the best thing you can do is tell the person to speak with the person in charge of administering the will or trust. It can take some time to clear the air and make sure all debts are paid, but this is all part of the process when a person passes away. As long as you know what steps to take, you can deal with anything that comes your way.

Source: FindLaw, "Paying the Debts of a Deceased Relative: Who Is Responsible?," accessed July 24, 2017

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