Making the Right Adjustments to Financial Accounts
Over time, you can work on updating your accounts so that they are titled just in your name. This is important to avoid confusion down the road.
Update the ownership of assets that were owned jointly by retitling them in your name. Most financial institutions and the registry of deeds will require a death certificate and a letter requesting the change, called a letter of instruction. Retitle your car and home, and update insurance policies so that they are in your name alone.
Update the beneficiary designation on your own retirement accounts and insurance policies. Decide whether you should put transfer on death designations on any of your bank accounts to give a friend or adult child access to cash if something happens to you. Don't make the account joint, because it exposes the money to his creditors.
Protect Your Credit
Check your credit report and your partner's to be sure you're aware of all the accounts held in either of your names. Close accounts that are solely in your deceased partner's name and that have zero balance. Accounts with a balance will need to be paid according to your state's laws with money from the estate. Check your credit report and your partner's to be sure there are no fraudulent accounts or transactions happening under his name.