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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    Default What Happens to a Joint Bank Account if One Account Holder Dies

    My Mother has passed away.

    She had four bank accounts in three different institutions. Three were savings accounts and one was a checking account. All four were in both her name and my name with her as the primary, and interest reported under her SSN. I do not recall if all four accounts are simply joint accounts or also have a specific POD provision to each other. I do know that both our names are on all four accounts, that she was primary and prior to mpm's death I had the ability to add or remove money from them on my own, which I did as necessary.

    I have not reported her death to them for two reasons. First, the county has been slow and I have not received her death certificates as of yet, which I believe the banks will want. Next, I am concerned because mom had some accounts set up for recurring autopay charges that are deducted from her checking account. Some of those charges from when she was alive have not come in yet. I am worried that if I notify the bank of her death, they might freeze the accounts and thoise autopay charges will be rejected. At this point I doubt it would hurt her credit, but it would make more work for me tracking and paying her outstanding bills.

    Does anyone know (or care to speculate) as to whether the banks might freeze her accounts upon notification of her death, considering I am also on the accounts, may be POD and am very much alive?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
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    1,395

    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Quote Quoting L-1
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    Does anyone know (or care to speculate) as to whether the banks might freeze her accounts upon notification of her death, considering I am also on the accounts, may be POD and am very much alive?
    Anyone can speculate. You need to read the account agreements, but it is probably unlikely that the banks will freeze the accounts if you're a joint account holder. Typically, in a joint account situation, when one account owner dies, the surviving account owner becomes the sole account owner. The POD provision doesn't typically kick in until all joint owners have died.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    1,213

    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Quote Quoting pg1067
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    You need to read the account agreements.
    I kind of figured that. Some of the accounts are probably 40 years old and trying to find the paperwork is like going on a treasure hunt through her apartment (if she ever kept the paperwork).

    I was hoping someone might know of general bank practices in such cases.

    Thanks though. You've pointed me in the right direction.

  4. #4
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    Jul 2018
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    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Quote Quoting L-1
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    Some of the accounts are probably 40 years old and trying to find the paperwork is like going on a treasure hunt through her apartment (if she ever kept the paperwork).
    You can visit the bank and ask for the account agreements. Since you're a joint owner, that shouldn't be a problem.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    15,400

    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Quote Quoting L-1
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    OK, I'm back with a new question.

    Mom has passed away.

    She had four bank accounts in three different institutions. Three were savings accounts and one was a checking account. All four were in both her name and my name with her as the primary, and interest reported under her SSN. I do not recall if all four accounts are simply joint accounts or also have a specific POD provision to each other. I do know that both our names are on all four accounts, that she was primary and prior to mpm's death I had the ability to add or remove money from them on my own, which I did as necessary.

    I have not reported her death to them for two reasons. First, the county has been slow and I have not received her death certificates as of yet, which I believe the banks will want. Next, I am concerned because mom had some accounts set up for recurring autopay charges that are deducted from her checking account. Some of those charges from when she was alive have not come in yet. I am worried that if I notify the bank of her death, they might freeze the accounts and thoise autopay charges will be rejected. At this point I doubt it would hurt her credit, but it would make more work for me tracking and paying her outstanding bills.

    Does anyone know (or care to speculate) as to whether the banks might freeze her accounts upon notification of her death, considering I am also on the accounts, may be POD and am very much alive?

    Thanks.
    Don't tell them that she has died. You are both on the accounts and you have every right to spend the money how you see fit. Let the accounts just continue on paying whatever is recurring, and close out any accounts that do not have recurring bills attached to them, and put the money into your own bank accounts.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    1,213

    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Quote Quoting llworking
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    Don't tell them that she has died. You are both on the accounts and you have every right to spend the money how you see fit. Let the accounts just continue on paying whatever is recurring, and close out any accounts that do not have recurring bills attached to them, and put the money into your own bank accounts.
    The issue here (and I forgot to mention - sorry) is that Social Security just made a direct deposit into her checking account for February. She died on January 27th, so if I understand things correctly, I need to tell the bank to send the February payment back to Social Security. I'm concerned that when I do that it may start things in motion and open a whole can of worms with respect to her two accounts in that bank. I also bank there, so moving money from those two accounts into mine still leaves that money in the bank's grasp .

    Sorry if I wasn't clearer about this but this has been a difficult week and my head is not thinking as straight as it should be. The funeral was yesterday and I spent the evening after going through her apartment, looking to see what's there and trying to figure out how to dispose of a 94 year old's lifetime of possessions. There is value to them, but I do not have the time or energy to sell them off one by one. I have contacted estate sale companies and the majority tell me while there is value there, it is not sufficient enough for them to come out and do an estate sale. The hard part is, as a kid, I grew up with all these furnishings, so to me it's just mom's stuff. Unless it's something I bough her as an adult, I have no idea what anything is worth. Oh well, it will all collapse into place. (G)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
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    Pugetopolis
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    59

    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Quote Quoting L-1
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    The issue here (and I forgot to mention - sorry) is that Social Security just made a direct deposit into her checking account for February. She died on January 27th, so if I understand things correctly, I need to tell the bank to send the February payment back to Social Security. I'm concerned that when I do that it may start things in motion and open a whole can of worms with respect to her two accounts in that bank. I also bank there, so moving money from those two accounts into mine still leaves that money in the bank's grasp .
    My experience is that after the SSA learns of your mothers death, they have the right to go back to the bank and rescind any direct deposits put into your mothers account which she was not entitled to.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
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    6,283

    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Quote Quoting L-1
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    The issue here (and I forgot to mention - sorry) is that Social Security just made a direct deposit into her checking account for February. She died on January 27th, so if I understand things correctly, I need to tell the bank to send the February payment back to Social Security. (G)
    Social Security benefits are paid in arrears. This means that the check received each month is in payment of the preceding month's benefits. Thus a check received in January is for December benefits.

    The payment received in February was for January's benefits. She lived 4 days short of the month's end. The most you could owe is for those 4 days and I doubt SS will ask for the 4 days of payment.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
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    Default Re: Estate Giving Notice on Behalf of a Deceased Tenant

    Thanks Bud & Mark.

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