Thank you for your patience as we researched this incident internally.
We are extremely committed to the highest levels of customer service and delivering great experiences to our owners, their guests or family members. Through this investigation, we have identified a system error, which delayed the loan cancellation process, and inadvertently caused Ms. Gronlund to continue to be contacted against her wishes. We recognize our mistake and are deeply sorry that this situation occurred, especially during her time of grief. So that we can extend our sincere apology to Ms. Gronlund, we have attempted to contact her with our apology and offer her a 3-night stay and a $250 gift card for the setback as small token of our appreciation for her understanding of this situation.
In addition to the statement above, I have answers to your specific questions:
What happens to a WorldMark membership when a member dies? Who is responsible for the balance/payments?
- Similar to any other asset, if a WorldMark owner passes away, their membership will go fully into their co-owners name. If it is individually-owned it would then be transferred to their heirs of the deceased through will or into the deceased’s estate. If there is a court-appointed executor for the deceased’s estate, the executor will be able to manage the account while a probate process is underway. WorldMark requires a copy of the death certificate or other probate or estate documents before the updates can be made to our records.
Can the surviving spouse or the heir get out of the contract if they are not interested in being a member? How?
- As in case of David’s membership, if there is no surviving spouse or heirs, the membership will go into the deceased’s estate and the executor of the estate will begin receiving notifications of the loan balance. If it is not paid the contract will be cancelled when a death certificate is received. This will not affect the executor’s credit.
- If a membership is transferred to an heir via a will and the heir wants the membership, the heir would need to contact our Owner Care team to transfer the membership into their name and they will take over responsibility for the payments. If an no heir steps forward to claim the membership the payments would go into collection under the deceased’s name and eventually be cancelled because it was not paid.
Where in the contract are the specifics regarding who’s responsible for payments once a member dies?
- On the front page of the contract you will find the “Transferability of Vacation Credits” statement. It says that the contract can transfer “by inheritance” meaning by will, or if no will by state law of inheritance or intestacy.