It is difficult to cope when someone you love passes away. Not only do you miss the person, but you need to worry about estate matters. You may also be dealing with calls from debt collectors on top of all of this. If this is happening, you are probably going through a lot of frustration.
The last thing you want to deal with is harassment from a debt collector while you are grieving. Here are some things you should know about creditors calling after your family member passes away.
Debt does not go away
It is important to understand that debt does not disappear upon death. The debt collectors may have the right to seek payment of the debt. However, they must go about this process correctly and legally.
Only certain people are responsible
You should only be receiving calls from a debt collector if you are the executor of the estate or your name is on a joint account. If neither of these things applies to you, make sure you direct the caller to the individual who is in charge of the estate. Then, you can send a letter telling the creditor you do not want anyone from the company to contact you again.
Sometimes debt collectors do not stop
If you are still receiving calls from a collector after you have asked to not be contacted, this is illegal. According to the Federal Trade Commission, there is a federal law protecting you from unfair, abusive or deceptive debt collectors. You do not have to put up with debt collector harassment.
Do not make any payments if you are not responsible
As long as your name is not on the debt and you are not operating the estate, you do not have to pay anything. Do not give in to any demands you receive from debt collectors.