What happens to my debt after I die?

When a person passes away, their debt is not automatically extinguished. Typically a probate court opens an estate that holds all of that person’s assets and all of that person’s liabilities. This allows the court to distribute the assets and liabilities according to who should receive them. Typically the liabilities, the debts, will be paid from the assets of the estate before distributing assets. There may also be wills, trusts, and other legal reasons that the debts wouldn’t be paid. Generally speaking, your family does not have to pay your debts when you die. If you have children, they don’t have to pay your credit card.