The sudden loss of a spouse is one of life’s most devastating experiences. Many of the financial decisions that you made together with your spouse now rest on your shoulders alone, or maybe your spouse handled all of the financial responsibilities. This can be a time of extreme vulnerability and uncertainty for widows, so it is imperative to have access to good resources and trusted advice. Whether it is managing household bills and expenses, or dealing with life insurance and financial investments, expert advice is a necessity.
For women specifically, statistics show that being a surviving spouse is largely a woman’s ordeal. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 25 percent of women aged 55 and older were widowed in 2010, compared to just 7 percent of men. Women are also often at a financial disadvantage when their spouse dies. There are three major factors driving this disadvantage: the gender pay gap, less time in the workforce, and the tendency to be more risk-averse than men.
Having a financial advisor assess your current financial situation will help determine the impact of your spouse’s passing on your financial situation going forward. Your advisor is a coach, support, and accountability partner as you move into a new stage of life. As a result, you will create a new financial strategy that takes into account your needs, goals, and dreams in a holistic fashion.