Money owed by deceased

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stoo_pid | 18:12 Tue 14th Feb 2006 | Business & Finance
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If a person dies with no assets but with debts mounting to several thousand pounds (mainly to credit card companies), does that debt simply get written off?


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If there are no assets at all and the debts were in the sole name of the deceased, yes they are written off. Creditors sometimes try to put pressure on relatives to pay - they should refuse.

If the debts are in joint names then the surviving debtor is fully liable.

Themas is correct - unless you leave anything at all that can be sold off to raise some cash, then your debt dies with you. Themas is also right in that sometimes family members automatically think that they will have to pick up the tab but this is untrue - companies might try it on with family members in the hope they fall for it, but in all reality, only you are liable for the debts you run up, unless of course you have opened something in joint names with someone else then they become liable.

If the deceased had protected the repayments with an insurance policy (cardholder repayment protection for credit cards / loan repayment protection) then the insurer may clear the balances in full.

If, however, they did not have anything quite like this; refer to themas' response.

I would just point out that this is a very rare occurence. If they had several thousand pounds worth of debt, the finance company will want to know how this money has been spent and what on. They will obviously check there recods.

If, for example, they have purchased a plasma tv and given it to a friend, it may be possible for the credit card company to have it repossessed from the friend.

If on the otherhand, all the payments have gone on alcohol and betting, then it wil be just a write off.
Reminds me of the saying - you can't take it with you (money that is), but you can take someone elses with you!
Yes the debt should be written off completely and no family member should accept responsibility for debts that they themselves have not made. In any persons credit agreements with the debts, there would be no mention of next of kin in the agreement. As an agreement is a contract under UK contract law and if no family member is in that agreement then the company persuing the family is violating the terms and persistance can be reported to a lawyer for harrassment who can simply write a legal letter on any family members behalf

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Money owed by deceased

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