What needs to be done with a check from funeral home made payable to an estate?

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What needs to be done with a check from funeral home made payable to an estate?

My mom died without a Will and no assets. I thought that we would have to rely on Medicaid which

we did not and cancelled, so I did a pre-pay to the funeral home from her life insurance policy of which I was the beneficiary of. The funeral was less than we planned and now I have a check made out to the estate of my mother. When I cash, what’s the intent of that money? Can I give it to church in her honor?

Asked on April 28, 2018 under Estate Planning, Wisconsin

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

The money belongs to the estate and should be distributed as would any other money in the estate. If there is no will, it goes to her children in equal shares (we assume that she did not have a living spouse at the time she passed away, as you do not mention one). If you are her only surviving child, it would become yours in its entirety. The recipients of the money can then do whatever they like with it, including donating to a church in her honor.


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