Financial Planning

Looking for Financial Advice for Widows? Meet the Financial Advisors Who Help Women After the Loss of a Spouse

By  Brian Thorp

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According to statistics reported by the Statista Research Department in June 2022, nearly 12 million widowed women are living in America today. Although it’s not surprising to most that women tend to outlive men, half of the widows over the age of 65 will outlive their partner by 15 years or more. 

If you find yourself in this situation, it will undoubtedly be some of the most difficult days, weeks, and months of your life. Losing a partner is incredibly difficult, and having to face decisions alone, many of them financial, can seem completely daunting. 

While grieving, you may want to get everything done as quickly as possible, or you may lack the energy to even open the mail. It’s important to not rush into any financial decisions and consider having a trusted financial professional in your corner who can help you navigate this new and uncertain time. 

You’ll likely find dozens of nearby financial advisors in your community well-suited to help with general financial planning services. But it may be more difficult to find a financial advisor with the knowledge and experience providing financial advice to women following the loss of a spouse.

Fortunately, many financial advisors offer virtual services so you can meet online no matter where you (or they) live. This means you can choose to hire a financial advisor who lives hundreds of miles away if you decide their specialist knowledge and a greater level of empathy and understanding of the needs of widows may prove a better fit.


💔 Financial Advice and Planning for Widows

This page is organized into sections to help you quickly find the information you need and get answers to your questions:

  1. Q&A with Financial Advisors Specializing in Serving Widows
  2. Get Answers to Your Questions About Financial Planning for Widows
  3. Browse Related Articles

– Financial Advisors Specializing in Serving Widows –

Financial Advice for Widows: Four Questions with Russ Thornton

Atlanta-based financial advisor Russ Thornton specializes in helping women who have recently lost their spouse. We asked Russ to answer a few questions to help widows, their friends, and family feel more comfortable and capable of making informed and educated financial decisions during this challenging time.

Q: Beyond the importance of maintaining your mental health In the first year of widowhood, what financial planning guidance do you commonly provide to widows during this difficult stage of life?

Russ: The first thing new widows need to do is breathe and take things one day at a time. Many widows feel they have to tackle financial matters immediately, and while some may need to be addressed sooner than others, it’s rare in my experience that any decisions need to be made immediately.

Once you’re ready, here are some things to consider or work on with your trusted financial advisor and other professionals:

  • Probate the will
  • Deal with any life insurance
  • Apply for any survivor benefits
  • Retitle accounts
  • Review all loans, bills, & other financial obligations

This list can be different based on your situation. We prepared this article you may find useful: Financial Tips for Your First Year as a Widow.

Get to Know Russ:

View the profile page for Russ on Wealthtender or visit his website to learn more.

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Q: What tax benefits are available to widows?

Russ: If you have a dependent child, you might be eligible for “qualifying widow or widower” status which can allow you to continue to file your taxes as married filing jointly up to 2 years after the death of your spouse. This will result in a larger standard deduction among other potential tax benefits.

Q: For recent widows who are unsure if they should hire a financial advisor, what do you suggest they consider to help them feel more confident in deciding whether or not to do so?

Russ: Not all recent widows will need a financial advisor, but if you’re considering it be sure to interview at least 3, though I recommend talking to 5 or more if you’re willing and able. Be sure to ask any and all questions you may have and make sure you thoroughly understand any answers you’re given.

If you don’t understand, ask for more clarification. Hiring a financial advisor is a big decision, and even more so once you’re on your own. Listen to your gut… your own intuition. If someone doesn’t feel right, walk away. There are plenty of great, trustworthy advisors out there, but there are also a lot of financial salespeople who are often more interested in lining their own pockets. Take your time and be skeptical. If you want to hire an advisor, the right one for you is out there.

Q: For women who have been recently widowed or their friends and family interested in learning how they can offer support, are there groups or online resources you recommend for people who have recently lost a spouse?

Russ: Feelings of loneliness and isolation can be crippling in the wake of your spouse’s death. It’s often healthy and helpful to seek support from groups and organizations in your area. For example, here are some local Atlanta resources for widows.

If you search online or ask around, you can find local support groups in your area as well. Your church or synagogue is also a great place to start if you’re interested in finding support as you deal with this major life transition. Also, many therapists and counselors have experience helping women deal with grief and adjusting to life as a widow. Just know that you don’t have to deal with this all on your own. There are people and groups out there who want to help and support you.


🙋‍♀️ Have Questions About Financial Planning for Widows?




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About the Author
Brian Thorp, Founder and CEO of Wealthtender profile picture

Brian Thorp

Founder and CEO, Wealthtender

Brian and his wife live in Texas, enjoying the diversity of Houston and the vibrancy of Austin.

With over 25 years in the financial services industry, Brian is applying his experience and passion at Wealthtender to help more people enjoy life with less money stress.

Connect with Brian on LinkedIn

Disclaimer: In order to make Wealthtender free for our readers, we earn money from advertisers including financial professionals and firms that pay to be featured on our platform. This creates a natural conflict of interest when we favor promotion of our clients over other professionals and firms not featured on Wealthtender. Learn how we operate with integrity to earn your trust.

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