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Re: Your unsecured (credit card) debt dies when you die (usually)
Old 03-06-2007, 02:27 PM   #41
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Re: Your unsecured (credit card) debt dies when you die (usually)

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Originally Posted by JustCurious
youbet, the answer is obvious
Easy for you to say!
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I would even suggest that she get a card in her name only, without you as an authorized user. That way, there would be no confusion at all that it is her card, and her card only.
Here's the deal on her card. Years ago we read that she should have her own credit, so she applied for a card. On the application, it asked if she wanted a second card to be issued to another person and she filled in my name. None of my job, financial or credit history was given and I signed nothing except the back of my card when it arrived. She's had that for many years and I don't think I have ever used the card they sent with my name on it.

Gosh, I hate to open up this can of worms. We use our cards all the time and have had them a long time.......one since 1970. Frankly, we just haven't thought much about the details other than making sure the credit limits were high enough to easily cover international travel. Then we just use 'em and pay the bill in full every month. It gets to be kind of a routine.

But if she needs to get another card, this time she can fill out the application and not request a card for me. I sure don't need it. In fact, we don't need anymore cards. I just wouldn't want her to have any issues if I get hit by the bus first.

Thanks for your comments.

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Re: Your unsecured (credit card) debt dies when you die (usually)
Old 03-06-2007, 02:41 PM   #42
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Re: Your unsecured (credit card) debt dies when you die (usually)

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Originally Posted by SecondCor521
PS -- youbet, sorry if I sounded blunt in my first paragraph above. I've had to deal with death, sickness, and divorce in my own life and will have some upcoming deaths to deal with and that is how I react.
No, no, not too blunt. I know what ya mean.

While not really interested in managing our finances, DW does know how to drive a Bobcat, back a trailer and write checks on our main brokerage account! So, one way or the other, she'd get me in the ground if she had to do it herself or write a check to the undertaker!

Perhaps one way to solve this would be for her to write her credit card company and ask if my death would affect her credit card in any way. As long as they say no, she should be good to go as she has a pretty high credit limit on it. If they say yes, she could find out why and take the appropriate action to remedy.

Thanks for the comments and discussion. We've never been through any of this, so it is indeed helpful to learn from others.

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Re: Your unsecured (credit card) debt dies when you die (usually)
Old 03-06-2007, 03:37 PM   #43
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Re: Your unsecured (credit card) debt dies when you die (usually)

FWIW, my MIL has other debt on her credit record, since the house mortgage was in her name (now paid off) and they lease a car, also in her name (paid in full every month). So it's not as though she'll be starting with nothing. And right now, her credit report reflects my FIL's accounts and they are all in good standing because he always paid something every month, even if not the minimums. So we will be applying for a card for her very soon. The worst they could do is cancel it on her, but I suspect instead they will just jack up the interest rate if her credit tanks. Which won't be much of an issue, since the last thing she will do after all this is carry any balance!

Also, imagine the nightmare had my MIL actually been the one to go first - all the debt is still there AND all the assets would then have been my FIL's, subject to creditors. Definitely good to plan for either scenario.

This whole thing has definitely made DH and I more aware of how we have our finances structured, and made him realize that he is not as up on our finances as he thought. He is looking for a little more tutoring!

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Old 03-26-2009, 03:27 PM   #44
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Alright so a month and a half ago my grandmother died. since then one of the companies has been calling unrelentlessly telling me I need to pay. That they'll do $5 for every $7 owed and blah blah blah. I know I'm not required to pay. but its a pain receiving these calls.... How can I get them to stop?
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Old 03-26-2009, 04:14 PM   #45
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Alright so a month and a half ago my grandmother died. since then one of the companies has been calling unrelentlessly telling me I need to pay. That they'll do $5 for every $7 owed and blah blah blah. I know I'm not required to pay. but its a pain receiving these calls.... How can I get them to stop?
1. Change your phone number. 2. Hire an Attorney to send a nice "Attorney Letter" Only. 4. Move. 5. Pay them (not recommended).
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Old 03-26-2009, 05:35 PM   #46
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Alright so a month and a half ago my grandmother died. since then one of the companies has been calling unrelentlessly telling me I need to pay. That they'll do $5 for every $7 owed and blah blah blah. I know I'm not required to pay. but its a pain receiving these calls.... How can I get them to stop?
Scroll down to the Q & A...there might be some answers for you.

Fast Answers: Savings & Spending, Credit, Collection. - MSN Money
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Old 03-27-2009, 02:24 PM   #47
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Alright so a month and a half ago my grandmother died. since then one of the companies has been calling unrelentlessly telling me I need to pay. That they'll do $5 for every $7 owed and blah blah blah. I know I'm not required to pay. but its a pain receiving these calls.... How can I get them to stop?
Oh, boy. I'm going through this drill right now for my mother's estate.

First, the executor of the estate should send each creditor that can be identified a letter identifying the account, date of death, and include a photocopy of the death certificate and the credit card cut in half. Send the letters by certified mail with return receipt, to the address for communications for each card. Keep copies of the letters. (A few cards will insist on a certified copy of a death certificate, but those are expensive. If they need it they'll ask for it.)

Ideally this should be done as soon as possible, but that can be pretty hard to deal with.

Now, if the account of the deceased is sold to a collection agency, and they are harassing you, then you need to deal with them. These folks will track down any relatives and hit them up for the money. Ask for the name, address, and phone number of the agency the next time they call. Send a certified letter with return receipt telling them that you don't owe the debt, and the collector should not contact you again.

Debt Collection FAQs: A Guide for Consumers

If they do call, contact your state attorney general and the Federal Trade Commission. Use annualcreditreport.com to check each of the three agencies that do credit reporting (I do one every 4 months around the year), and look out for bogus entries. Follow the credit agency instructions for filing a claim dispute.
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Old 03-27-2009, 03:04 PM   #48
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This thread has it all!
mortality, spirituality, morality, legality, reality, and frugality!
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Old 03-27-2009, 03:11 PM   #49
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The credit card companies don't contact the family members and say "You are not legally obligated to pay, but we think you are ethically obligated to pay..."
yes, they do..........
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Old 03-28-2009, 10:59 PM   #50
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You're right. Just because they say it doesn't make it an enforceable agreement. However, I could easily see a court holding an authorized used responsible for their charges, under those circumstances. Their use of the card (and availing themselves of the benefits offered by the CC company) indicates an agreement to repay. You don't need a signature to have a valid contract.

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I don't see how that can be enforceable. What if AMEX said that your neighbor would be responsible if you don't pay, would your neighbor then be responsible?? Just because they say it, doesn't mean they can enforce it.
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Old 03-28-2009, 11:02 PM   #51
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Oh, boy. I'm going through this drill right now for my mother's estate.

First, the executor of the estate should send each creditor that can be identified a letter identifying the account, date of death, and include a photocopy of the death certificate and the credit card cut in half. Send the letters by certified mail with return receipt, to the address for communications for each card. Keep copies of the letters. (A few cards will insist on a certified copy of a death certificate, but those are expensive. If they need it they'll ask for it.)
Actually, if there's an executor (or a personal representative in some states), they should send the creditor (1) the court order appointing them executor or PR and (2) instructions for filing a claim with the estate. Note that different states handle things differently, and the process may differ slightly from state to state.
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Old 03-29-2009, 05:39 PM   #52
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Well, then you A Moral One's will Just Love this one...
1. About a month or so before They Filed bankruptcy, their lawyer told them to go Max out their Credit Cards..
2. They did
3. They were the Best Dressed and had the most Nicest Things living in a Rental Home for the next 5 yrs...
4. They even Bought Some nice Things for other's and the others gave them the cash for them, minus -10%...

Of course, Everything is justifiable..
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Old 03-29-2009, 06:40 PM   #53
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Dennis:

1.) Your "shift" key appears to be malfunctioning.

2.) If this is a recent story, it sounds like an urban legend, as the Bankruptcy Code was modified in 2005 to make it much, much harder to run up your credit cards before you file and then have them discharged. Even before the changes, creditors could contest this sort of behavior in the bankruptcy court.

3.) Bankruptcy, at least Chapter 7, subjects all your current non-exempt assets to the claims of the creditors. It does not subject your future income to those claims. I could write a book on the reasons the law has developed this way in the U.S., but suffice it to say that the Founders determined the issue to be of such importance that it is among Congress' specifically enumerated powers in Article I of the Constitution.
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Old 03-31-2009, 02:03 PM   #54
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... I don't understand why people are even answering the phone for CC companies ... people, screen these calls!
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Old 03-31-2009, 02:40 PM   #55
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... I don't understand why people are even answering the phone for CC companies ... people, screen these calls!
because they will call and call and make themselves a large nuisance. The executor is whom they want to talk to,I found out because I was the executor for my sister's estate.

I still get 1-2 calls a month about m sister's discharged accounts, and she died in August of 2006.........
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Old 03-31-2009, 03:43 PM   #56
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because they will call and call and make themselves a large nuisance. The executor is whom they want to talk to,I found out because I was the executor for my sister's estate.

I still get 1-2 calls a month about m sister's discharged accounts, and she died in August of 2006.........
OMG, this is terrible.
In my state, the use of a telephone to harass is a criminal offense. I would look that law up for your state, get the actual public law citation, and change your answer machine message to inform all callers (these jerks) that you are reporting any continued harassing phone calls to the agency in charge per public law whatever.
Then just don't answer the phone for a little while. I screen all my calls. I will only pick up if I recognize the caller's number or the caller ID kicks in.
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Old 12-14-2009, 04:54 PM   #57
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Here is an article about how debt collectors try to collect from the dead...

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/04/bu...dead.html?_r=2
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Old 12-14-2009, 06:20 PM   #58
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I would expect my son to pay off my debt, unsecured or not. When my father passes, as his executor I can assure you that all his cc debt, if any, will be paid.

My ethics are not defined by the lack of ethics of others. You may have a different of idea of what is ethical.

However, it it clear that if the assets of the estate do not covered the cc debt, then the cc company should be SOL. I would never pony up my own assets to covered someone else's cc debt.
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Old 12-15-2009, 03:26 AM   #59
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Just Curious, I very much appreciate this information. My ethics extend to individuals who would at least possibly have similar ethics toward me. However, since I know CC companies, universities, hospitals, etc. would happily render the decedentís carcass and sell the grease, I would have ZERO problem about telling them to get stuffed in the situation you describe.

Score one for the home team!

Ha
Agreed. If my heirs pay one penny that they are not legally required to as a result of some collection vultures preying on them, I will haunt them all (and they have all been told this). I do not see this as an ethical issue - this is a business-dealing with companies who know the rules better than I do.
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Old 12-15-2009, 05:05 AM   #60
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I know we have a couple of knowledgeable attorney on the board so I am curious what debt is the estate legally obligated to pay?

Nursing home bill?
Credit Card debt?
Utilities?
Medical bills?
Personal services like attorney fees?
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