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No will, & a very late funeral bill

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Junior Member
What is the name of your state?What is the name of your state? Michigan
My father lived in MI and died in Jan 05 without a will. His life insurance policy through his employer (General Motors) was supposed to be set up so that, upon his death, the funeral home would be paid right off the top and whatever was left would go to the beneficiaries: 40% to his sister, then 20% to each of his 3 children (including me). We were assured by the funeral home and Dad's employer that all was handled properly, and so all us beneficiaries were issued checks for our shares. Also, please note that Dad was married at the time of his death but then she died the following month. Although she was not a beneficiary of that policy, she did receive all of Dad's other remaining assets. So...all seemed well until last week when my sister received a bill from the funeral home. They said that there was some sort of mix up and never received any payment from GM, and that we were now responsible. GM said, yes, so sorry we messed up, but the beneficiaries were already paid and there's nothing left. My question is, who is legally responsible for the funeral bill now -- GM, the funeral home (who was supposed to bill GM but didn't), the beneficiaries, or the deceased wife's estate? Thanks very much, Sandra

Dandy Don

Senior Member
Ask for a copy of the life insurance policy so you can read it to see if there actually was a provision in there about paying the funeral expense and whether the stated purpose of the policy is to pay the funeral expense or not.

Bottom line is that beneficiaries were overpaid through a mistake not of their own making, and so they now have to chip in to get this matter taken care of.


Junior Member
No will & very late funeral bill

Thank you, we'll find out about the details of the policy. If the policy states that the insurance company was supposed to have paid the funeral home out of the proceeds, then we'll likely be responsible (even though we didn't know we were overpaid). If it's not in the policy, then it seems like his late wife should have paid. But she is now deceased as well, and her estate was distributed to her children. I guess either way we're going to have to come up with the money, so hope they'll take it in payments. (I already gave away my share to my son for college tuition.) Thanks again for your advice.

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