Deceased Contacts/ Client Death

HowToHandle_header.pngClient Death

Overview: When one of your clients passes away, there are a number of steps we recommend you take within your database in order that you don't erroneously send out correspondence to or otherwise attempt to contact the deceased.



Date of Death Field


Family Name Field






Steps to implement:

 1. Create a ‘Deceased’ Status within the database.

Manage Database Lists

Redtail Essentials: Manage Your Account Video


2. Change the contact’s status to Deceased and fill out the Date of Death field on the client’s contact record.


Contact Details

Redtail Essentials: Contact Record Video



3. If the client was the head of household within the Family, change the spouse to the new head of household. Adjust the Family Name to reflect the new household arrangement.

Family Relationships

Redtail Essentials: Family & Memberships Video


4. Move the deceased client from Family to Memberships. This will allow for the relationship to be tracked without infringing on the tax definition of family.


5. Remove the Client Review Date on the deceased clients record. If the client’s spouse is an active client as well, move date over to new head of household.

Client Review

Client Reviews Reminder Report


6. Add a Note to the deceased contact record of all changes. Move or Copy important notes to the surviving spouse’s record.


Redtail Essentials: Notes Video

Copy a note to another record: 


Move all notes to another contact record:

7. Complete, move to surviving spouse, or delete any future or repeating activities.

Contact Overview Activities

Activities by Contact Report


8. To remember all these steps for future client deaths, it is best practice to put all these tasks into a workflow. You can even use our workflow template below to get started:Screen_Shot_2019-11-05_at_8.31.47_AM.png

9. Further Automate the workflow by setting up an Automation that links the workflow when the contact's status is updated to Deceased.

Redtail Essentials: Automations Video


Pro Tip: Add a note to the Deceased Spouse that all notes were moved to the surviving spouse’s record. You can even insert the hyperlink to the surviving spouse’s record in the note! 

Adding a note to deceased client:

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