Many women defer family finances to their husbands. This is especially true for older women, which can leave the women ill-prepared to handle things after their husbands pass away, according to The New York Times in "Helping Women Over 50 Face Their Financial Fears."
The biggest thing for most women is that they need to know how to manage their day-to-day finances. They need to learn how much money there is, what bills need to be paid, and how any money should be invested.
Some widows also have problems in that their husbands own a business that they inherit and do not know how to run.
The best way to deal with these problems is to avoid them, if at all possible.
Husbands and wives should discuss family financial matters to make sure the wife is prepared, in case the husband passes away.
Other widows have legal problems, since their stepchildren might seek to challenge the widows' inheritances in court.
An estate planning attorney can help advise on challenges a spouse faces after the death of their partner.
Reference: New York Times (Sep. 1, 2017) "Helping Women Over 50 Face Their Financial Fears."