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  • Determine who will act as executor or administrator of estate;
  • Maintain a record of all decisions made, steps taken and financial transactions;
  • Contact funeral service provider to make funeral arrangements;
  • Consider publishing an obituary (Vancouver Sun and Province, tel: 604-605-2254);
  • Locate estate assets and safety deposit box, if applicable;
  • Secure estate assets and ensure adequate insurance coverage is in place;
  • Notify post office to redirect mail, if applicable;
  • Obtain a death certificate and conduct wills search by contacting BC Vital Statistics Agency, tel: 604-660-2937;
  • Review will, if applicable;
  • Obtain probate or letters of administration from court, if required;
  • Call Service Canada to notify of the death and to obtain information regarding Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security and related benefits, tel: 1-800-277-9914;
  • If the deceased received pension benefits, extended health and dental benefits from a pension plan, contact the pension plan administrator to advise of the death and to determine eligibility for continued benefit coverage for dependents;
  • Contact Passport Canada to cancel deceased’s passport, tel: 1-800-567-6868;
  • Contact Social Insurance Registration to cancel deceased’s Social Insurance Number, tel: 1-800-206-7218;
  • Notify Canada Revenue Agency of the death and cancel benefit payments in the name of the deceased, tel: 1-800-959-8281;
  • If the deceased was receiving veteran’s benefits, call Veterans Affairs Canada, tel: 1-866-522-2122;
  • If the deceased was receiving the Seniors supplement or disability benefits for seniors, call the BC Seniors Line, tel: 1-800-465-4911;
  • Cancel deceased’s Driver’s License at local ICBC Driver Licensing Office, tel: 604-661-2800;
  • Contact local ICBC Autoplan broker, or private insurer if applicable, to cancel or change car insurance;
  • Contact life insurance company to obtain benefits, if applicable;
  • Contact financial institutions to remove deceased’s name from joint accounts or to transfer accounts held solely by the deceased into the name of the Estate;
  • Contact credit card companies to remove deceased’s name from accounts or to cancel accounts;
  • Notify phone and utility companies to change the name on bills or change the service;
  • Contact Land Title Office regarding removing deceased’s name from title to property, tel: 604-660-2595;
  • Contact BC Gazette (and local newspaper) to arrange for publication of notice to creditors, tel: 1-800-663-6105;
  • Examine claims against estate and defend any legal action against estate of deceased;
  • Contact an accountant to file tax returns and apply for clearance certificate;
  • Pay debts;
  • Prepare detailed accounting of assets as well as receipts and disbursements during administration of the estate;
  • Obtain approval of financial statement from beneficiaries or court;
  • Distribute personal and household effects;
  • Pay legacies and make partial distribution to beneficiaries according to terms of the will or Estate Administration Act of BC, as applicable (ensure have signed release from each beneficiary first);
  • Obtain clearance certificate from Canada Revenue Agency;
  • Complete final distribution; and
  • Contact a lawyer regarding general estate questions and procedures for probate or letters of administration, if required.
What to do When Someone Has Died: A Checklist]]>