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Home>UPDATE: 1 in 10 Americans say they will die in debt

UPDATE: 1 in 10 Americans say they will die in debt

UPDATE: 1 in 10 Americans say they will die in debt


By Catey Hill, MarketWatch

This doesn't bode well for those who wish to leave assets to their children

Debt may follow many of us to the grave.

More than 1 in 10 Americans (12%) think they will die in debt. That's according to a recent study by CreditCards.com (http://www.creditcards.com). That's a dramatic improvement from the 21% who said that in 2015. This drop may be due, in part, to increased consumer confidence, says Matt Schulz, the senior industry analyst for CreditCards.com.

Don't miss: What happens to my husband's credit score if his adult children default on their student loans -- or die? (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/what-happens-to-my-husbands-credit-score-if-his-kids-default-or-die-2016-01-19)

But it's troubling because Americans now have more debt than they have in years. "I'm worried that some people are getting carried away," he says. "Credit card debt has been rising steadily for more than five years. It seems like a lot of people are forgetting the painful lessons of the Great Recession."

The under-30 age group is most sure that dying in debt won't happen to them. Meanwhile, the older you get, the more likely you are to think you'll carry debt with your forever, with more than one in four people 65 and up saying they'll never get out of debt.

 Age Percentage who say they will die in debt 18-29 4% 30-49 11% 50-64 14% 65 and up 28% Source: CreditCards.com 

Dying with debt certainly isn't the worst thing. In many cases, your surviving family members won't have to pay the debt you accrued while you were alive (instead, they become the responsibility of your estate). There are exceptions like if a surviving person like a spouse co-signed a loan with you or is a joint account holder with you (s:/www.nerdwallet.com/blog/insurance/debts-after-death-life-insurance/).

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