What is Settld?
Settld is a ‘Tell Us Once’ equivalent service for individuals to notify private sector “Service Providers,” such as banks, utilities, insurance and pension companies, of a death. We notify all identified Service Providers of a death in one go, to close, freeze and transfer accounts. Wherever possible, we will also streamline communication with each company to reduce your admin workload. With inbuilt case tracking and automatic information chasers, Settld is designed to support you at a time when it matters the most.
How did Settld come about?
Late in 2019, Settld founders - Vicky and Julie Wilson - lost a close relative, Vicky’s grandmother, Julie’s mother-in-law. They faced the account bereavement closure process and realised how terrible it was, as Vicky repeated the words ‘my grandma has died’ multiple times to different companies. It took them more than 10 hours on call lines, and over six weeks to sort out all the accounts. They realised the clear need for a service like Settld and built their platform to save other families from facing the same unnecessary difficulties.
What are the benefits to using Settld?
Settld automates death notifications, and makes it easier for you to request bereavement account closure or transfer. We provide a ‘one click’ button to contact multiple Service Providers simultaneously, and give live updates on the status of your accounts at any given time. In some cases, we may also be able to save you money by notifying Service Providers and quickly stopping direct debits for subscription services you no longer need.
Who can you notify?
Settld can notify household services (utilities, TV, phone, broadband, loyalty cards), digital services (social media, digital entertainment) and financial services (banks, building societies, credit cards, pension providers, insurers) on your behalf. Please note that we will do our best to notify and streamline the communication with each Service Provider, but there may be some companies that will request to speak with you. For those companies, we will hand over that notification to you directly.
How much does Settld cost?
We do not charge members of the public to notify companies of a death. Settld was awarded UK government COVID-19 relief funding to get started. We also serve commercial for-profit organisations - such as probate practitioners and local authorities - who pay a nominal fee to use our service, which keep it free.
Why do you need to verify my identity?
This ensures that you, and the Service Providers we notify, are protected against fraud. Onfido, the identity verification provider that we work with, will verify that your identity documents are authentic and have not been stolen or tampered with. We only ever send these details to Service Providers who actively request them (normally financial institutions). Otherwise, your data remains locked safely in SOC 2 Type II and ISO 27001 digital vaults.
Why do you need a picture of the original Death Certificate?
We ask for a picture or scan of the original Death Certificate because a lot of companies require this for their records. The death must be matched against the General Register Office (GRO) data to prove that the death occurred and to prevent fraud. Some companies may still request that a physical death certificate is sent to them. In that case, we will let you know the postal address to send it to.
Do I need to upload a copy of the Will?
If there is a written will, it is best to upload it. We will only ever send the will out to Service Providers who ask for it as part of the probate process (normally financial institutions). Sometimes Service Providers will want to check the details of the Executors listed in the Will, as they are the point of contact for settling outstanding credit or debt against each account. For Service Providers who do not request or need it, we do not send it out.
Is this service secure?
Yes. Settld is compliant with all data laws and requirements. We use industry best practices to ensure data security both in storage and in transmission. Our legal sponsor is Womble Bond Dickinson, and we run our service on Cloud based products that have the highest privacy and security protection.
What happens once the notifications are sent?
You will see an update on your Settld Accounts Progress page showing the status of each account request. Until the account is ‘Settld’ according to your demand (closed, frozen, transferred) the account will be in pending status.
How long does it take to achieve ‘Settld’ status on the accounts?
Settld makes it quick and easy to send out notifications. However, each Service Provider has its own internal systems and processes to follow. You can generally expect between 2-4 weeks to settle accounts but some Service Providers take longer. In the meantime, Settld will follow up with the companies for updates on your behalf, so you do not need to spend hours sitting on call lines or keeping on top of emails.
What is the Bereavement Standard and how can I get involved?
At the moment, there is no industry standard when it comes to Bereavement Customer Care. Service Providers can ask for any documents they like, take as long as they want to respond to bereavement cases and are not required to train their staff to deal with bereavement well. In 2020, Settld started campaigning alongside Cruse Bereavement Care and Marie Curie for a new standard to support bereaved customers. So far over 92,000 members of the public have signed our petition at www.change.org/BereavementStandard. A Bereavement Standard will make it easier and less stressful for everyone when it comes to account closure or transfer for those who have died. Please consider sharing and signing the petition to add your voice to the campaign.