What should I do first?

After a loved one passes, it can be hard to know where to start. Here are some examples to help you get started.

Check on the well-being and financial needs of loved ones left behind.

Alternative arrangements for care may be needed.

Call decedent’s employer.

Request all benefits information, including details on employer-sponsored life insurance. If decedent was self-employed, determine how to gather pertinent records.

Reach out to financial institutions.

Contact institutions where the decedent had accounts or safe deposit boxes.

Determine who is named as executor and/or trustee in the estate plan.

A common practice is for the named executor to contact an estate planning attorney to discuss qualifying with the court to be formally appointed before any action is taken on behalf of the decedent.

Contact decedent’s estate attorney and other legal professionals.

Consider compiling a list of initial questions you may have. Determine what notifications are needed and/or required.

Coordinate with the funeral home.

Request at least 10 copies of the death certificate for notifications.

Trust services available through banking and trust affiliates in addition to non-affiliated companies of Wells Fargo Advisors. Any estate plan should be reviewed by an attorney who specializes in estate planning and is licensed to practice law in your state.