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What happens to someone's debt after they pass away? Would their next of kin be responsible for it?

New York, NY |

Debt exceeding $50,000 with no co-signers on the debt.

Attorney Answers 3

  1. DeConsumer debt, such as a credit card, is solely the responsibility of the card holder unless another person makes themselves lible for it. Next of kin are not responsible for the debt. However, the debt would be an obligation of the estate of someone who passes away that would reduce the size of an estate for a next of kin who might inherit from the estate.

    But if you were not a co-signor you should have no responsibility.

  2. Their Estate is responsible.

    I am a former federal and State prosecutor and have been doing criminal defense work for over 16 years. I was named to the Super Lawyers list as one of the top attorneys in New York for 2012. No more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by Super Lawyers. Martindale-Hubbell has given me its highest rating - AV Preeminent - in the areas of Criminal Law, Personal Injury, and Litigation. According to Martindale-Hubbell”AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence." Fewer than 8% of attorneys achieve an AV Preeminent rating. I also have the highest ranking – “superb” – on Avvo. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me. The above answer, and any follow up comments or emails is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.

  3. Estate is responsible for debt before distribution to heirs.

    If this answer is helpful, then please mark the helpful button. If this is the best answer, then please indicate it. Thanks. For further information you should see an attorney and discuss the matter completely. If you are in the New York City area, then you can reach me during normal business hours at 718 329 9500 or

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