The Globe and Mail published an article earlier this week about seniors dying with debt. In terms of debt accumulation, they are the fastest-growing segment of the population.
They don’t tend to talk about it, and the debt seems to come from gradual accumulation rather than, for example, large one-time purchases. The article also discusses the fact that, if a person dies with more debt than assets, their Estate will probably be insolvent.
Generally, Executors of such Estates (usually children of the deceased person) don’t need to worry about personal liability for such insolvent Estates. But in my view, it does not end there.
What children should not do over the years (if at all possible) is stay silent. There are several stories of children discovering, after their parents pass (and much to their chagrin), different forms of debt their parents had accumulated, such as reverse mortgages, credit cards, credit lines, and so on.
It’s a shock, and it should encourage children to watch their parents’ lifestyle and not be afraid to speak with their parents about it.
This ad ran in the Richmond News on December 6, 2013.