Is an heir responsible for credit card debt after the death of a parent?

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Is an heir responsible for credit card debt after the death of a parent?

My parent owns their home outright and has no other debt aside from credit cards. I am the only heir. Can their home be seized in order to pay CC debt after death? What can be done to prevent this from occurring?

Asked on October 3, 2011 under Estate Planning, New Jersey

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for the death of your parent.  While you yourself is not responsible for the credit card death, the estate of your parent is responsible for the credit card debt.   You are going to have to open an estate proceeding in order to transfer the house, correct? And I am sure that you will be named as the personal representative of the estate (executor if a Will or Administrator if there is no Will).  As part of the probate proceeding you will have to give notice to creditors of the estate - which is the credit card company - as to their right to file a claim.  Once that is done and the claim is properly filed then the estate has to pay the debt.  I think that you need to speak with an attorney about the matter.  Good luck to you.


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