Thursday, May 7, 2009

Dying... and leaving expenses behind.

Remember, Trinidad "Trina" Etong? The wife of Ted Failon who supposedly committed suicide because she was having financial problems.

When one dies, do their financial obligations end with them? Legally, the answer is NO. Dying is not an escape, both from obligations and expenses. The family they leave behind will be answerable for everything the dead thought they could escape from by taking their lives... or just plain dying.

In the case of Trina Etong, her husband Ted Failon would be liable for the payment of her obligations, with money coming from her estate. Not a lot of informal or personal creditors understand this, so they just choose to write-off the deceased's loans or payment obligations. Maybe it also has something to do with the Filipinos culture of empathizing with the bereaved loved ones. Good for the Etongs if that is really the case. But business creditors know the law only too well, they have lawyers to see to it that they are able to collect, dead or alive.

Anyway, the brother of my Lola died last Tuesday. Like us, his family is not well to do. I can only hope they are able to cope up with the hospital bill (he died in the hospital) and the funeral expenses. Lord knows it is costly to even just die in the Philippines. Getting a memorial plan is not a safety-net either. I got mine from Legacy Consolidated and where is my money now?

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