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Dealing with Death

How to deal with a death of a family member

Losing a loved one is a distressing and emotional time and the financial and administrative requirements that are needed can be an added worry when you need it the least. Each province has particular requirements in relation to paperwork which must be adhered to, as well as the requirement to notify a number of Federal government agencies of the death.

Paperwork requirements

The Registration of Death Form is usually completed at the time of the funeral arrangements by the next of kin of the deceased and its purpose is to document a legal record of the death.

The Registration of Death Form is then used to issue an official Certificate of Death. This document is used a lot by the executor of the deceased to deal with their various affairs and it will need to be provided to external organizations to close down accounts or make financial decisions, such as selling property or making life insurance claims.

A Medical Certificate of Death is completed by the physician who attends to the deceased and verifies their passing.

Who to notify

You should make contact with the Canada Revenue Agency in order to settle the taxes of the deceased (you will need their social security number). In addition, you should make a list of all of the personal accounts of the deceased which need closing, such as bank and investment accounts, as well as personal identification such as passports for example.

As next of kin, you may be entitled to some benefits if the deceased person was receiving a pension from an employer. You may also be eligible for Government of Canada benefits such as Old Age Security or Allowance for the Survivor. Seek advice to ensure that you are receiving everything to which you are eligible.

Finally, you may need to make a life insurance claim. If this is the case, be sure to have the policy number, claim form and a copy of the death certificate to hand.

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