Death of a family member and the banking matters of the estate

Even amidst all the mourning, a death calls for plenty of practical arrangements. There is a funeral to be arranged, the estate’s invoices must be paid and an estate inventory meeting must be arranged. With this advice, you can get started with managing the finances of the estate.

  • 1. Notify banks of the death

    1. Notify banks of the death

    Banks will receive official information about the death of their client from the National Population Centre. However, it is recommended that you notify the banks about the death of a family member as soon as possible. You can send a certificate of death or extract from the National Population Register to the branch office, indicating the identity of the deceased and the death itself. A copy of the certificate is sufficient. Any immediate family member may file the notice.

  • 2. Right to use the accounts and cards of the deceased, payment agreements

    2. Right to use the accounts and cards of the deceased, payment agreements

    The right to use the accounts and cards of the deceased is revoked once the death is confirmed with the National Population Centre.

    Any payment agreements associated with the accounts, excluding e-invoices, will remain unchanged. However, it is advisable to go through the payment agreements of the deceased with the bank as soon as possible to avoid unpleasant surprises.

    Managing the finances of the estate before the estate inventory meeting

    Any party to the estate may pay invoices addressed to the deceased and invoices directly related to the death, such as funeral expenses, without a power of attorney. Printed invoices addressed to the estate or the deceased can be sent to the bank for payment using a payment envelope. It is also possible to pay the invoices at any Danske Bank branch.

  • 3. Start the inventory of the estate as soon as possible

    3. Start the inventory of the estate as soon as possible

    The estate inventory meeting must be arranged to account for the parties to the estate and the assets and liabilities of the deceased within three months of the death. The estate inventory deed s prepared for the purpose of inheritance taxation. Ask all banks used by the deceased to provide information about the balances of the accounts, loans, investments and other services used by the deceased. The information is provided as of the date of death. If the deceased was married, information about the assets and liabilities of the widow as of the date of death is also required for the estate inventory deed.

    Order here: Audit letter (form in Finnish).

    Estate inventory deed

    • Obtain official certificates from congregations or magistrates.
    • Order an audit letter covering the deceased’s customer relationship with the bank and, if necessary, that of the widow.
    • Only the widow can order an audit letter regarding the widow’s customer relationship with the bank.
    • Even one party to the estate alone can order the audit letter.
    • More instructions and information on preparing the estate inventory deed is available on the Tax Administration website: vero.fi
  • 4. Who are parties to the estate?

    4. Who are parties to the estate?

    Parties to the estate are natural heirs, beneficiaries of the last will and testament and the window based on marital right until the assets have been divided. In order to reliably determine the parties to an estate, a detailed extract from the population register is required for the deceased (starting from age 15 until the date of death without gaps). The detailed extract is a combination of official certificates from magistrates and congregations.

  • 5. Personal insurance coverage

    5. Personal insurance coverage

    If the deceased had a personal insurance policy, the related information must be determined, as the notes to the estate inventory deed must always contain any personal insurance valid at the time of death. Information about a life or pension insurance is available from the insurance company.

    The beneficiary of the insurance should apply for compensation for death without delay because the claims settlement decision indicates all the information that must be stated in the notes to the estate inventory deed. If the insurance contains a provision on the beneficiary, the compensation is paid directly to the beneficiary. In this case, the assets are usually sooner available to the beneficiaries and there is no need to await the completion of the estate inventory meeting and the progress of the division of inheritance.

  • 6. Delivering the estate inventory deed to the bank

    6. Delivering the estate inventory deed to the bank

    Send a copy of the estate inventory deed and its appendices to the bank. If the estate inventory deed has not been confirmed, the bank also needs, in addition to the appendices to the estate inventory deed, a detailed extract from the population register without any gaps in order to reliably determine the parties to the estate. The magistrate can confirm the information about the parties in an estate inventory deed. This makes it easier to manage errands in the future, as the bank will not have to separately investigate the accuracy of the information about the parties.

    It will take a while to investigate the estate inventory deeds. This means that you may not be able to immediately manage banking matters even if the bank has been provided with a copy of the estate inventory deed and its appendices.

    Managing the finances of the estate after the estate inventory meeting

    A power of attorney is required for managing any other banking business of the deceased than paying invoices. The parties to the estate may authorise one person to handle the banking matters. The signature of each party to the estate is required for the itemised power of attorney.

    Managing the banking matters of an estate at Danske Bank:
    Power of attorney (PDF)