As I stumble along the journey of settling my Mom’s estate, I thought I’d share a few more (hopefully helpful) tips. A disclaimer: this is simply my experience–please don’t take this as legal/financial gospel.
How Do I Know If My Mom Has Life Insurance?
If not already specified, your best bet (if applicable) is to contact your mom’s current employer.
If you are the beneficiary of your mom’s policy, your mom’s employer will most likely ask you for a death certificate and an obit. (Keep in mind that the death certificates may take a while. It’s okay.)
What Happens If My Mom Passes Before Tax Time? (4/15)
If your mom passes before April 15, know this. You can file taxes on her behalf. It’s weird and strange. Talk to an accountant, and he or she will help you out.
If I Received Life Insurance, is this Taxable Income?
The principle amount is not, but the interest on the account is.
What Should I Look For?
Anything in the mail that says “Important Tax Documents” set aside and bring to your accountant.
How Do I Find an Attorney/Accountant?
Ideally, your best bet is to ask friends or family for recommendations. If that option is not available to you, look online for local resources.