Author Topic: Gifting money on the death of a relative  (Read 2457 times)

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bopper

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2013, 09:40:33 AM »
What about taking up a collection and using the money to buy a book or two and donating them to the library in the deceased's name?

I was going to suggest something book related as well.

Thipu1

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #16 on: February 04, 2013, 10:07:10 AM »
What about taking up a collection and using the money to buy a book or two and donating them to the library in the deceased's name?

I was thinking about that sort of thing but the library would probably prefer a donation in the name of the deceased to purchase books rather than receive a donation of physical books. 

In our circles, a direct gift of money to the family from friends of the deceased's daughter would be considered very odd.  It might even be considered insulting.  However, customs vary. 

 

TurtleDove

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #17 on: February 04, 2013, 10:28:17 AM »
Has your mom ever priced a funeral, especially for somebody who had no estate ot life insurance? 

All situations are different, but I can tell you that I am a financially responsible adult whose 28 year old husband (read, no assets and no life insurance) died unexpectedly.  His funeral expenses were $18K.  That all fell on me.  I very much appreciated any help defraying those costs.

In situations where the money is not being given to the person responsible for the funeral expenses, I agree it comes across as tacky.  For example, some of the checks were written out to my husband's parents, who pocketed the money and let me pay for all funeral expenses.  Extremely tacky.  For some reason, his parents did not grasp that the money was not a bonus to them but rather intended to defray costs of an unexpected funeral.

LadyR

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #18 on: February 04, 2013, 11:28:10 AM »
When my father died suddenly, instead of flowers or donations, almost everyone sent momey (which surprised me). I tend to send flowers, unless I know that the family's circumstances are less than ideal and then I do send money.


amylouky

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #19 on: February 04, 2013, 11:28:48 AM »
Round here, money is generally only given if it's known that there is a need for it. IE, an unexpected death (young person, etc.) so funeral expenses weren't planned for, or if the family is in bad financial circumstances. It's also usually given in a directed way, like, a check with a note explaining that it is to help with funeral expenses. Otherwise it seems like compensation for their loss, which is just.. weird.
Gifts tend to be more service-related, such as babysitting while family attends to funeral arrangements, or food of course, or household help. I've also seen gifts of "something to give you a break", like a spa visit or something like that.
But just handing someone money, when there's no indication that they need it, would be unusual.

LadyR

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #20 on: February 04, 2013, 11:33:42 AM »
With my father, the money was all given with the sympathy cards at the funeral. People also brought food, which I generally do as well, if I know the family at all. It was more family/close friends who brought food, while money donations came from everyone, including one card from several of my father's former co-workers (he was a taxi driver).


Outdoor Girl

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #21 on: February 04, 2013, 11:36:50 AM »
If they knew their friend had extraordinary expenses regarding her mother's care and passing, I could see it.  But to just give money?  It seems strange to me.

Many years ago, in high school, a good friend's father passed away.  Their mother decided to pack them up and return them all to England, where she had family to help her with the three kids.  The call went out to friends that they could use some money to pay for expenses.  My parents gave some money to the fund.

(As an aside, it was somewhat amusing.  My parents saved $2 bills (more common in Canada at the time) as a way to save money.  My Dad would package them together in stacks of 25 ($50).  He'd hide them in the bottom of a garbage can under the garbage bag, in the basement.  So they were quite amused when my Dad handed over two stacks of $2 bills.)
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LibraryLady

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #22 on: February 04, 2013, 11:44:34 AM »
Donation to the library is always nice.  We usually have a list of books that we want, that the budget doesn't stretch to.

oceanus

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #23 on: February 04, 2013, 12:21:06 PM »
I also think offering to housesit and maybe tidy up for family while they are at the funeral/cemetery is a nice gesture, and one that isn’t often thought of.  I’ve heard that thieves sometimes target the homes of people who are burying a loved one.  (sheesh………this is the lowest of the low, but it does happen)  >:(
« Last Edit: February 04, 2013, 02:32:54 PM by oceanus »

Elisabunny

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #24 on: February 04, 2013, 01:44:03 PM »
I also think offering to housesit and maybe tidy up for family while they are at the funeral/cemetery is a nice gesture, and one that isn’t often though of.  I’ve heard that thieves sometimes target the homes of people who are burying a loved one.  (sheesh………this is the lowest of the low, but it does happen)  >:(

This is a good idea.  When we were planning my son's funeral, our pastor let us know that a security detail for our home had already been arranged, which we appreciated very much.   

Housesitting is a very tangible "we care" gesture.

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Girlie

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #25 on: February 04, 2013, 02:27:41 PM »
I honestly see nothing wrong with it. It is something that is just "done" where I live (which is in the southern half of the U.S.).

But I don't think there's anything wrong with NOT doing it, either, since it is also customary here to send flowers and/or take food and/or donate to a cause (usually in my area, it's the deceased's church).

I don't have a problem with any of those options.

TootsNYC

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #26 on: February 04, 2013, 02:41:21 PM »
I was struck by how many non-funeral expenses there were for my dad when my mom died suddenly.

I had relatives here who sent money along with a note that said, "I know this can be an expensive time. We hope this money will make things a little easier for you."


Those people weren't in a position to "make things easier" by bringing food, offering a sofabed to out-of-town relatives, run errands, etc. But the cash they gave made it easier to do many of those things.

And people in a book club may actually make their member feel uncomfortable if they try to physically help in some ways.

Just Lori

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #27 on: February 04, 2013, 02:49:42 PM »
I remember a thread from long ago that explored this topic.  I don't know if it was this board or another.  However, a poster replied that when her child died, a friend sent her some money and said something like, "In the coming days, when you find yourself at a point where you just need something, go out and have lunch/spoil yourself on me."  I thought that was a kind way of giving cash while acknowledging that grief will not end after the funeral.

I am not from a community that gives cash. However, there sometimes is a fund set up at a local bank for funeral expenses, and friends will pass around the word that it exists.  Perhaps the OP could ask a close family member if anything is set up for donations.

JoyinVirginia

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #28 on: February 04, 2013, 04:10:09 PM »
In the  rural community where I grew up, there was always a donation box at the local grocery store for the ham to be cooked for the church dinner after the service. The left over money was given to the family in an envelope. When my dad died, I used the cash to buy stamps for the thank you notes.
There is nothing wrong with giving the daughter cash. There is nothing wrong with giving the money to any memorial designated by the family. Just depends on the circumstances.
Personal note, my mother s burial is prepaid. But at the time of her death there will still be some charge that I will have to pay, probably around $500. I am prepared for this, but if anyone gives money I will be happy to accept it. There is a museum and church any donations will be directed to, also.

TurtleDove

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Re: Gifting money on the death of a relative
« Reply #29 on: February 04, 2013, 04:18:01 PM »
There is nothing wrong with giving the daughter cash.

I think it matters who is paying the funeral costs.  I would find it odd to be giving cash to a daughter if the mother had a husband who was paying for the funeral, for example.