Typical advice is to notify Experian (888-397-3742), Equifax (800-685-1111) and TransUnion (800-888-4213) on the death of an individual.

However, is this really needed? The banks seem pretty good at trolling the Social Security Administration reports of deaths, and automatically closing accounts. Would Experian Equifax and TransUnion do any less? Is the typical case "no problem", they got it?

  • 2
    I wonder, can you effectively register people who are alive at that link (e.g., myself) to reduce junk mail...
    – new name
    Nov 10, 2018 at 12:51
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    Anecdotal evidence: the poeple that died in the house we bought did all those things, and we still get junk mail for them (after 12 years). It seems useless. Junk mail senders value the count of addresses they have (that's what they get paid for), and don't care to purge anyone, even if they are verified dead and will never buy anything.
    – Aganju
    Nov 10, 2018 at 13:31
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    @Aganju: Not only was I getting mail for the previous owner for at least a decade after I bought my house, I was getting life insurance marketing for her husband, who'd died several years before that!
    – jamesqf
    Nov 10, 2018 at 18:08
  • You've never signed an agreement with them, what obligation would you have to notify them? So in that regard it's not "necessary" Feb 23, 2019 at 0:45

1 Answer 1


I’ve never heard this advice. After one is deceased and their affairs settled, the family is not responsible for any new debts caused by fraud. I suppose there’s no harm in contacting the agencies, if it would make you feel more comfortable.

  • As of 2022, virtually all the top search engine results for "What to Do When Someone Dies" recommend notifying all 3 credit agencies. Jan 15 at 15:09
  • I’d agree, there’s no harm, and perhaps a small benefit in doing so. My father in law passed first, and recently, my mother in law. Mail to her attention is returned to sender, so I don’t even know how her stolen identity would ever impact us. But again, for sake of ‘finishing the job’ I suppose it’s little added effort . Jan 15 at 15:29

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