The loss of a loved one is a particularly difficult and confusing time. It can be hard to know where to start.
We're here to help and support you and your family and make any dealings with us as simple as possible.
Call us on 0345 300 0522
You can call us between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday.
Write to us at:
Mortgage Admin Team
Peterborough Business Park
There are so many difficult aspects to deal with and decisions to make following the loss of family or a friend. We can help make things a little easier, by assisting you with organising financial matters and making those first steps.
1. Register the death
You'll need to register the death at any local registry office (within 5 days in England and Wales and 8 days in Scotland). For Government advice on how to register a death and to locate your nearest registry office go to www.gov.uk/register-a-death. Once you've registered the death you will be given a death certificate. It's probably worth asking for a few copies as this could help you deal with some of the more practical matters quicker.
2. Make funeral arrangements
It's important to say goodbye and a Funeral Director should be able to guide you through all of your options for arranging a funeral. Citizens Advice recommends finding a Funeral Director through a professional association, such as the National Association of Funeral Directors.
Worrying about paying for the funeral isn't something we want you to be overly concerned with. If you need funds from the deceased's account it is possible to cover some funeral expenses from the estate. Cheques will be made payable to the funeral director or third party.
3. The Will
You'll need to find out whether or not there is a will. If you do not know, the deceased's solicitor and bank are good places to start and there's more advice here: www.gov.uk/find-persons-will.
What you will need to do.
At this time, the most important thing to be aware of with a mortgage account is that the mortgage payments must still be made, even when a borrower has passed away.
If you think you may have difficulty making the mortgage payments, you can call our Mortgage Admin Team on 0345 300 0522. They'll put you through to a colleague who will be able to help you work out a payment plan. They'll also be able to provide specific advice relating to the type of products held.
Once you have registered the death, you will need to provide us with an original or certified copy of the death certificate. Call into any one of our branches or post to our Bereavement Team (contact details are listed to the right).
What happens after the death has been registered?
This depends on whether the mortgage is joint or solely held.
Please see the information for each of these options below:Sole borrowers
If a will has been made: We'll need to see the original Grant of Probate (after the death has been registered) so that we can note the Executor(s) names on our records.
If there's no will: We'll need to see the original Grant of Letters of Administration. The account will then need to be repaid, either from:
- The sale proceeds of the property
- The proceeds of a life insurance policy.
What address will you write to?
We'll then write to the Personal Representative(s) of the deceased at the borrower's property address to inform them of the process. Please note we'll only be able to send information about the mortgage to the Personal Representative(s) once they have provided evidence that they are authorised to deal with the administration of the estate. In some cases and with our consent, the property and the responsibility for the mortgage may be transferred to another person. For more information contact our Bereavement Team on 01733 372 422.
If there's a joint mortgage, we'll need to see the original or certified copy Death Certificate. The deceased borrower's name will then be removed from the mortgage. This means that the other owner is then solely responsible for repaying the mortgage.
How property ownership is dealt with depends on whether the property was held as joint tenants or as tenants in common.
Joint Tenants: The deceased's interest in the property will automatically transfer to the other owner(s).
Tenants in Common: When borrowers hold a property as 'Tenants in Common' (where each borrower has a specific share in the property) the deceased's share will not pass automatically to the other borrower. Once the death has been registered, you'll need a solicitor to help deal with the deceased borrower's share of the estate.
For definitions, please refer to our Bereavement Glossary of Terms.Will I need to talk to several different people?
The Mortgage Admin Team is your first point of contact and they are able to assist you with any questions you have. For some queries relating to mortgage payments they may put you in touch with a specialist in those areas, however they will still be your dedicated support.
As soon as you contact us we will get the process started however the exact timescales will vary depending on the circumstances. We will keep you updated on the process.
It's really important that you contact us and send the Death Certificate straight away so we can update our records and get the process started.
Someone can call on your behalf to obtain general advice on the next steps. We can however only give account specific information to the Personal Representative/Executor.
If a Power of Attorney/Court of Protection Order has been registered on an account this is no longer valid on the death of the account holder. This means that the person who held the authority isn't able to operate or access the deceased's account(s) anymore.