Sadly, losing a love one comes to all of us. And while we will all react differently there are some steps that need to be taken and things to consider.
|Coping with grief|
Behavioural changes are a normal part of the grieving process. However, it’s important to recognise when these behavioural changes are harmful to the person or others around them.
Some people may begin to drink heavily or become increasingly irritable or even violent. Others may become withdrawn. Some may need to talk about the cause of death, some will throw themselves into work and others may appear to almost ignore what has occurred. There are many emotions experienced during the grieving process.
The death of a close friend or family member often leads people to reassess their lives. This is natural and can actually be very positive. However, a time of great emotional upheaval isn’t always the right moment to be making life-changing decisions. This is particularly so for a surviving partner, who may be feeling desperately lonely and even fearful of the future.
You may simply need someone to talk to, or may feel someone else in the family could benefit by speaking to an independent person. The following contacts may help.
Organising a funeral and attending to family and friends can often keep you so busy that you have no time to grieve.
For some people, the days and weeks after the funeral prove the most difficult. Many of the people who were around you have moved on with their lives and the feeling of emptiness can become quite palpable.
There will also be many other things to attend to some of which can be complex and distressing. The following is not financial advice; it’s merely to provide an overview of some things to consider.
A surviving partner will need to unravel joint financial structures (these may include issues concerning a family business), sell assets and items that are no longer needed and halt or alter payments to and from various people and organisations. Prepare a list of items that may need to be considered.
This could include:
You should keep a copy of the death certificate with you. This will be needed when altering things such as joint bank accounts or halting certain payments.
You may need help with many of the areas above. These are things the executor of the Will may be able to provide assistance with.
This is by no means an exhaustive list and everyone’s situation is different but here are some things to consider.
Inheritance is generally tax-free. Note however, that it’s only the initial passing of an asset under an inheritance that’s tax-free. Any subsequent disposal of that asset by the recipient may attract capital gains tax (provided it’s considered an ‘asset’ for capital gains tax purposes).
Note: You should consult with your taxation adviser before taking any steps concerning assets you may inherit as the decisions you make could affect any capital gains tax exemption.
Superannuation payments are made to provide for retirement. However, in the case of a premature death, there’s often a lump sum benefit paid to the estate or a nominated surviving dependant.
For more information about your particular circumstances you may like to visit the ATO super or call the superannuation info line on 13 10 20.
Life insurance payouts may sometimes not be considered as part of the estate, and this will depend upon how the policy was initially set up.
Your Will may need to be altered.
Centrelink may need to be contacted for a number of reasons. Even if you haven’t previously been eligible for payments, this may have changed as a result of your loved one passing away.
|How we can help|
While it’s hardly the most important aspect of losing a loved one, there may be an impact to your finances.
In some cases there will be insurance benefits and an inheritance to consider, in others you may be left with debts. Either way talking to an expert could help.
An A-Z Review® of your finances can help you get back on track and also address areas that will need to be changed such as joint accounts and direct debits that are no longer needed. Request an A-Z Review®.
ANZ Retirement Banking Specialist: ANZ Retirement Banking Specialists can help you review your position. Knowing where you stand may make the decision to retire a little easier. They have extensive knowledge of the options available to you and starting with an A-Z Review® to explore your needs, they can examine your everyday banking and recommend a solution to support your plans. Request an A-Z Review®.
ANZ Home and Investment Loans: an ANZ Home Loan specialist can help explore your options and find the right solution that best suits your needs. And remember, ANZ is Australia’s most awarded home lender1. Contact us today.
ANZ 50+ Live Cover – at this very sad time, it may also be worth thinking about your own future and how you could help ensure your family doesn’t need to worry about things such as the cost of your funeral. Find out more about ANZ 50+ Live Cover.
ANZ ANZ Financial Planner – can help with much of the above but also review areas such as life insurance and the impact losing a love one may have on your superannuation and your financial future. Your initial discussion is complimentary and without obligation. Speak with an ANZ Financial Planner.
®A-Z Review is a registered trademark of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) ABN 11 005 357 522.
1. Money magazine Home Lender of the Year Award 2010, 2008, 2007, 2006 and 2005, and AFR Smart Investor Magazine Home Lender of the Year Award 2005, 2004, 2002, 2001, 2000 and 1999. Australian Lending Awards, Mortgage Lender of the Year 2011 and Best Investor Lender 2011. The Australian Lending Awards is an independent initiative of The Adviser and specialist research and advisory firm RFI.
ANZ 50+ Life Cover is issued by OnePath Life Limited (OnePath Life) (ABN 33 009 657 176 AFSL 238341). OnePath Life is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) (ABN 11 005 357 522, AFSL 234527) an authorised deposit-taking institution (Bank) under the Banking Act 1959 (Cth). OnePath Life is the issuer of the product but it is not a Bank. Except as set out in the issuer’s contract terms (including the PDS), this product is not a deposit or other liability of ANZ or its related group companies. None of them stands behind or guarantees the issuer. The information provided is of a general nature and does not take into account your personal needs and financial circumstances. You should consider the appropriateness of the information, having regard for your objectives, financial situation and needs. You should read the ANZ ANZ 50+ Life Cover Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) (PDF 220kB) and consider whether this product is right for you.
ANZ Financial Planners are representatives of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited, ABN 11 005 357 522, the holder of an Australian Financial Services licence