Everyone knows that Americans have generally racked up a bunch of credit card debt that needs to be paid at some point. However, many people wonder about what will happen to that credit card debt when they pass away and whether the debt needs to be paid at all if the debtor dies.
The answer can actually get very complicated. The bottom line is that when the person who owes the credit card debt passes away, the estate is supposed to pay the debt before distributing any assets to the heirs. However, this can be very complicated if the credit card debt is held jointly. The joint owner of the credit card account is equally liable for the debt. Things can get even more complicated if the estate does not have enough money to pay the credit card debt.
The best solution is to pay any credit card debt before you pass away. However, if you have a family member who has recently passed away and left credit card debt, then you need to talk to an estate attorney about making sure that the debt is taken care of in the way that is least to harm the interests of heirs and beneficiaries.