My husband just died and the bank is asking for a death certificate. How do I get one?


Funeral homes are extremely helpful after the death of a loved one. Among the services they provide are notifying Social Security and ordering death certificates. It normally takes between two weeks to receive the certificates. Your only decision is how many copies of the death certificate to get. Extra copies only cost a few dollars if added to the original order, but if you run out and need to re-order it is much more expensive and time consuming. Plan on a copy for each bank, financial institution, insurance company, and for each county in which you own real estate. Even then you will not have enough because of the savings bonds in the safe deposit box or the insurance that came with the credit card. The point is, at this difficult time in your life you shouldn’t be stressing over the number of certificates. Get more than you think you need. For most estates a practical minimum is twelve certificates and twenty is probably a better idea.