out joint account after one dies
If person A has a joint savings account with person B, and person
A passes away, does that account automatically go to person B? The
account was not a joint survivorship account. Person A died without
a will and did not make provisions for their funeral expenses. Can
the administrator of the estate use some of the funds in that account
for funeral expenses and any unpaid bills due? After these expenses
are paid, does the balance go to person B or the estate?
Thank you for your help.
-- Sherman Shares
My editor and I would like to remind you that
I'm not an attorney and cannot provide you, or person B, with legal
advice. Since the joint account was not one with rights of survivorship
the account probably has the account owners registered as "tenants
in common," and the estate of the decedent maintains an ownership
interest in the account up to the degree or level of the decedent's
contribution to the account. When a person dies without a will,
it is called dying intestate, and state law determines how the assets
in the estate are distributed. A CCH
Web page allows you to see the intestate rules in different
Person B should talk to the bank and discuss the account.
If he is on the account as a matter of convenience, then it is likely
that B only had the right to perform transactions on A's behalf
while A was alive. If both A and B shared ownership interest in
the account then it could become important to show how the account
In general terms, since there is no right of survivorship
and the account is not a payable-on-death account, the estate has
an interest in the account and would use that interest to pay claims
on the estate and, absent that, pay out its pro-rata share to inheritors
under the applicable state intestate law.