Though many Texas residents hope that the holiday season will be a time a joy, that is not always the case. Families can lose loved ones at any point of the year, and a death in the family during the holidays may seem even more harrowing. Still, there is much to do after such an event when it comes to addressing the person's final affairs.
Though undoubtedly grieving, family members still need to make sure that they take the right steps during this time. Funeral arrangements are needed, which can be emotionally taxing, especially if the deceased did not make arrangements ahead of time. After these plans have been handled, it is important that estate planning documents, like the will, are located. These documents will hold valuable information for the tasks ahead.
When it comes to that information, the will dictates who gets what in most cases. The executor will need to follow the instructions in that document when the time for asset distribution comes. Additionally, it is important to understand who has the legal responsibility to handle the decedent's creditors, though it often falls to the executor as well. When handling creditors, it is important to do so in order of priority, especially if an estate is insolvent.
Certainly, the loss of a loved one can take a major toll on the holidays. It can even feel challenging to reconcile what has happened with the time of the year. Nonetheless, obligations in the aftermath of the loss still need addressing, and Texas residents may want to speak with their legal counsel to understand their first steps for settling the final affairs of their loved ones.