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Take it slow when it comes to estate administration

Even when the death of an Illinois resident is not sudden or unexpected, surviving family members still need time to grieve. Some people may even panic, even if only a little since they may have relied on the decedent for support. Starting the estate administration process does need to happen within a decent time frame, but there is no need to rush into it in the first few days.

It may take that long or longer to receive the death certificate, which family members will need numerous certified copies of in order to conduct estate administration activities. Some sources recommend getting at least 20 copies to be on the safe side. If the deceased family member was employed at the time of death, the employer will need to be notified as soon as possible.

Taking some time to grieve may also prevent emotional decisions that could prove financially harmful in the future. Some family members need time before they can go through a loved one's belongings in order to locate a will and the necessary financial documents needed in order to begin the estate administration process. Unless there is an urgent financial need, these tasks can wait for a while.

However, they will need to be carried out at some point in the near future. Getting a handle on what estate administration will look like for a particular Illinois resident could take some time. It would be better to be thorough than to miss something that could unnecessarily complicate matters either now or in the future. Fortunately, it is not necessary to go through the process alone. An attorney could prove invaluable in helping ensure that everything goes smoothly.

Source: USA Today, "Estate planning: How to resolve finances after a death in the family", Anna-Louise Jackson, May 16, 2018

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