Losing a loved one is an emotionally trying experience, often one that can be terrifying and overwhelming to both the bereaved and their family and friends. Losing a loved one often leaves the bereaved in need of some form of financial assistance. Monetary demands can include funeral costs, estate settlements or the loss of a dual income. There are several options available that offer financial support to the bereaved.
You can open a bank account to receive donations. You can visit any bank or credit union and they will walk you through the process of opening a special account in honor of your loved one. Your bank will give you the account number so that anyone who wishes to can make a deposit into the account, either through the bank or over the phone. If you are publishing an obituary, you can include the account number and bank name at the bottom for donations. These donations can be used to defray funeral costs, act as an education fund for any children or provide living expenses for the bereaved.
Friends of the bereaved can organize a benefit in honor of the loved one. You can plan a benefit as a large tribute and invite friends and acquaintances of your loved one. You can do a bit of networking and contact local businesses to donate goods and services to either be raffled off or bid on. Donated services are helpful since all money earned is forwarded directly to the bereaved's family. Planning a bake sale is also a good idea to raise money and takes a bit less planning.
If you are the bereaved and are struggling financially, consider looking into your loved one's health insurance and mortgage companies or get in touch with your own creditors. Though you are in a very delicate situation, it is best not to wait in asking for help. According to health website Cancercare.org, many companies are sympathetic to personal loss and will be glad to work with you in developing payment plans and compromises. If you don't think you're strong enough to handle the details yourself, entrust a close friend to help you with the process. The longer you wait to organize your finances, the less help will be available in the health and credit industries
Catherine Colombo is a freelance writer based in Portland, Ore. She received her Bachelor of Science in written communications and English language, graduating with honors from Eastern Michigan University. Colombo has participated in publishing, fiction, mixed media and poetry symposiums since 2001.