The Right Approach For The Right Situation

Can you inherit debt?

On Behalf of | Mar 18, 2022 | Estate Planning And Probate

Your parents worked like dogs throughout life, and they enjoyed the fruits of their labor. Their philosophy was that they could not take money with them in the end, so they spent it while they could. Perhaps they enjoyed themselves a little too much and left you with outstanding bills.

You might need to do some legwork on your parents’ behalf to make things right. But do not stress over their outstanding accounts.

You cannot inherit debt

You are not liable for your decedents’ debts unless you co-signed on an account. But that will not stop bill collectors from coming after you as their next of kin. Collection agents will say almost anything to get what they need. They may try to make you feel guilty or threaten legal action. Do not take the bait. Contact an attorney to help you weigh your options.

The estate handles debt payments

The estate will cover financial commitments left behind by the deceased. To pay creditors, the executor must liquidate money, jewelry, or property left behind. This liquidation includes items your parents’ may have intended to give as an inheritance, such as their house or wedding rings. After balances are free and clear, the administrator will distribute available gifts to descendants. If there is not enough capital to cover everything, collectors will erase the remaining credits.

The executor to pay off as much debt as the estate allows in probate. But you are not legally responsible for coming up with the cash on your own.