My 23 y/o unmarried child recently passed away unexpectedly. (I haven't even contacted the insurance company yet.) If the life insurance policy is payable to me, am I legally responsible to pay their remaining bills (credit card, ambulance, etc.)?
I assume if it is payable to their Estate I would have to pay. I haven't contacted the Probate Court because there were no assets other than the life insurance.
2 Answers from Attorneys
If the only asset is the policy, and you are he beneficiary, you don't have to pay the bills. You should file the CT estate tax return (there will not be a tax due, but there will be a [small] probate fee due - less than 1/2 of one percent of the policy).
Please accept my condolences on the loss of your child.
As beneficiary of a life insurance policy you are not obligated to pay your son's debts. However if you file paperwork to become administrator of your son's estate, the creditors may hound you day and night and make all sorts of threats. Personally I would weigh the amount of the death benefit with the amount of your son's outstanding debts and probably not leave those debts hanging, unless they were unusually high. But that's a personal choice.
Once again, please accept my condolences on the loss of your son.
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