What to do if my father is deceased 2 yes ago with no Will or much of anything, other than a bank account?

He was in nursing home with Alzheimer’s, mom already deceased. My sister had POA and she received letter from the bank with an account that still contains the POA. They said since there is no Will and no executor of the estate that the money was available to her. However, when she went to local branch with all paperwork they told her she couldn’t withdraw the money without a Will or executorship. Now what does she do? The acct had over $1000 in it but has dwindled down to a little over $800 from being inactive?

Asked on April 29, 2014 under Estate Planning, Tennessee


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

She can go the local probate/surrogates/chancery court (the court that deals with wills, trusts, and estates--it goes by different names) and get a set of what are call "letters testamentary" directed to her; that should give her the authority to access the bank account.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.