When you physically and emotionally invest in a relationship, you never think of the uncertainties of life that may happen randomly, like; divorce or death of a spouse. In a separation, you may get lucky with a skilled divorce lawyer who can leave you well supported after the relationship ends. However, what happens when your husband dies randomly yet he is the sole breadwinner? 

It can be a confusing and tormenting journey if the issue is not handled well. The more natural thing is to jump into panic mode, but luckily, you  found this article to get solid information on what to do:

1. Get Therapy

It is okay not to be okay. After the death of a spouse, it is only natural to be in a state of trauma, confusion, stress, and emotional breakdown. If all these mixed feelings are not well-handled, they could lead to even more disaster. Remember, you’re the only person left to take care of your kids, and you’ll have to be strong enough to answer all the tough questions they ask and be there to handle their mixed feelings. 

Of course, even for you, managing all that will not be a walk in the park. Therefore, before you start planning anything, please get help from a certified therapist, trusted friend, family member, or your church. In this moment of strong feelings, they can check up on you constantly, advise you, help you manage the tough times, and guide you to making the right decisions. 

2. Get The Death Certificate

Though your spouse has a family, only specific people from your in-laws’ side can be allowed to have his death certificate. Besides his close relatives or his lawyer, you also have equal rights to his death certificate. It is a crucial document, and it will help you, especially with financial institutions, credit card Social Security Administration Office, or insurance companies. This way, if there are some benefits such as assets, cash, or even transfer of life insurance to cover you, then this certificate’s proof will make it easier. 

Some institutions may need originals, while some may also accept the copy. Don’t worry if you run out of original copies since you can still access them through a request to the national body that handles it, though it may take some more time.

Death of breadwinner get on tension

3. Have A Clear Outlook Of Your Finances

At times, women tend to hide their financial standing when questioned by their partners in marriage. However, now things are not the same. It’s time to address your finances, in all honesty, especially your current expenses, income, debt, and savings. If, for sure, your man was the sole breadwinner, figure out how your savings can support you in the short term as you work towards getting a stable income. If you had investments together or had his business, now is the time to check if you can also access them and keep them running.

4. Keep A Written Record of All Expenses

Now you’re in charge, and onwards, you’ll be responsible for all the expenses, no matter how large or small they are. Note down the different times in which the bills should be paid, especially the household bills so that you can always clear them on time. If you need help tracking and managing your expenses, you can use the available tracker apps to help with that. 

5. Review your Budget

Well, it doesn’t mean that you stop having fun since once in a while, you will all need the outdoors to clear your mind. However, all this will now be carefully budgeted for. Here, you will be required to make tough financial decisions that mainly involve slashing down that lifestyle you upheld. For instance, if you’re paying house rent, you may be required to downgrade to move to a much smaller home or a cheaper estate that matches your income. Also, this is the best time to set financial goals, set up an emergency fund, and, in the meantime, and live with what you can afford.

6. Plan How to Settle Debts

Debt is a significant issue affecting most marriages between two surviving spouses, and the same effect is felt in equal measure in the death of a spouse. It’s not unusual to see people or companies which you didn’t even know of come to claim that your partner left some unpaid money behind. 

Dealing with creditors can be stressful; therefore, you must understand all the laws about that so that you don’t fall victim. However, you may be forced to settle some debts, especially if you had a joint agreement, while for some, you’ll be exempted from payment and may use some of your assets in repayment. Therefore, it’s essential to note down all the debts and work on a repayment plan to fix them early enough.

7. Set Long Term Financial Goals

It’s necessary to plan for the future, especially your financial standing, so you don’t struggle much and stop solely depending on the daily income alone. As stated above, emergency funds are essential, but it would be ideal if you made long-term investments that can earn you passive income even when you’re unable to work. You can also work towards your retirement savings as early as now. Don’t worry about the amount you set aside for this; as long as you’re already doing it, it will keep you motivated.

8. Get A Side Hustle

A single source of income may never be just enough to provide for your family and live a comfortable life. Also, an extra income boost will certainly help in your financial growth. If you’re too tired from your main job, you can weigh your side hustle and see if it is a better and more sustainable option. However, if you’re starting to make additional income, don’t quit your job just yet; let the business grow first as you monitor the market, then later, you can decide if you can shift to your startup. 

You can also get into the various freelancing jobs that are slowly getting accepted worldwide that match your schedule. As much as you need an extra source of income, ensure that you balance your work and rest time to avoid being tired or getting ill due to overworking.

There’s a lot to address when it comes to money matters. However, financial experts advise women to take charge of their finances as they used to when they were single. If you’re married and reading this, it’s wise to ask yourself this question. In the eventuality of divorce or the death of your spouse, will you swiftly take charge financially and stand in the gap? Once you have the answers to this, then you shall know what to do next.