Loss of a loved one

Loss of a loved one

When a loved one passes away, the uncertainty of what to do next can be consuming. We’re here to help you navigate this difficult time.

During this period, you may need to take charge of your loved ones’ assets and property, see to funeral expenses, and ensure that any debts and taxes are paid. You may also be asked to distribute their assets under the terms of the will, or by the law of Intestacy when there is no will.

We understand that this can be a challenging time, and we want you to know that we’re here to help. We’ve put together some helpful information to navigate the steps we take, and what we may need from you.

Notifying us of the death

You can notify us of the death of a loved one by contacting us yourself, having a relative contact us, or through a Public Trustee or solicitor. You will need to provide a Death Certificate and a Letter of Administration (if there is no will), or a Grant of Probate. Joint account holders can continue to operate their account as normal, with a review after six months to discuss alternative options.

Managing deceased accounts

For account balances from $0 to $500 funds can be released by the next of kin or the informant listed on the Death Certificate (where identity has been verified).

For account balances from $500 to less than $15,000 the following options are available for release of funds.

  • Transfer to an established account in favour of the estate.
  • Transfer of funds to your nominated solicitor’s trust account.
  • Cheque withdrawal in favour of the estate.

We can help you establish an estate account if there is not already an existing estate account for the deceased held elsewhere. To open an estate account, we’ll need the original or certified copy of both the will and the Death Certificate. If no will is present, a Letter of Administration is required.

Where an account balance is greater than $15,000 an estate account must be opened. A Grant of Probate is required to release funds from individual accounts, regardless of whether a will is provided. The same options are available as above to release funds for amounts over $15,000 we just require the Grant of Probate instead of the will or Letter of Administration.

When you contact us to notify us of the passing, and we’ve been able to complete the verification process, we can arrange a time to talk you through the next steps. We’ll help you take care of managing your loved one’s accounts, and we’re here to answer any questions you may have.

Funeral expenses

We understand that funeral expenses can be a significant burden, which is why we’ll ensure that any approved expenses (with receipts), such as a burial plot, cremation, and funeral service, can be paid from a deceased account before it’s closed. Please note that catering, flowers, photography, and headstones are not considered approved expenses. Funeral expenses can be paid on behalf of a customer before the Death Certificate is received.

Cheque management

Managing cheques can sometimes be confusing. To make sure things go smoothly follow these two simple rules:

  1. Cheques made out to the individual deceased person must be deposited into their account before the account is finalised.
  2. Cheques made out to the estate must be deposited into an estate account.

Account closure

  • To close an account, you must be the executor. Accounts can be closed by the executor once all required documentation has been provided. An estate account may be required in many circumstances to release the beneficiary funds. Documentation may include:
  • Certified Death Certificate
  • Certified will/Letters of Administration
  • Certified Probate
  • Certified identification from the Executor/s

We’ll work with you to make sure the account closure process is as stress-free and straightforward as possible.

Key terms

ExecutorA person (or trustee) appointed by will or by court order to administer the estate of the deceased. There can be more than one executor of an estate. If there is more than one executor, they may be appointed to act jointly or jointly and severally.

Jointly appointed – The executors must act together.

Jointly and severally appointed – Executors can all act together but can also act separately if they wish.

Probate – An order from a court which confirms a will is valid.

Letters of Administration – These must be applied for when a person dies without leaving a will, so that an administrator can be appointed to the estate. A person named as the administrator becomes the personal representative of the deceased and is entitled to proceed in much the same way as an executor.

Can’t find what you’re looking for?

Don’t worry – it happens to the best of us. Lucky for you, there are plenty of people at Hume Bank ready to help. All you have to do is shoot us an email, give us a call or drop by a branch.


  • Are there Executor requirements?

  • Is a Grant of Probate required?

  • What is a Letter of Administration and when is it required?

  • What do I do if my loved one had a credit card?

  • What do I do if my loved one had a loan?

  • What if there are outstanding bills?

  • Can I close an account with the deceased’s name on it?

  • Can I obtain statements for the accounts of a deceased person?