If my name is on my mother’s bank account,will itbe considered to be a marital asset for divorce purposes?

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If my name is on my mother’s bank account,will itbe considered to be a marital asset for divorce purposes?

I am planning on filing for divorce. My mother would like to place my name on her bank account so that I will have the authority to take care of her financial issues should she become ill. She would be the primary on the account. I would like to know if my husband would be able to take away any of the funds from my mother’s account during the divorce? If so, is there a way to protect her funds from my husband but still keep my name on the account? I should probably add that I have been separated from my husband since 2008 but not legally.

Asked on October 12, 2010 under Family Law, Illinois

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It may make better sense for the time being for you to have your Mother execute a Power of Attorney form for you to be able to do as you need with her finances.  You can also become a signatory on the account without be added as a joint owner.  This will leave less matters open to attack, so to speak, should things get crazy between you and your husband in the divorce.  The best thing for you to do is to go and see an estate planner for your Mother's estate.  Explain your concerns and make sure that you have the documents in place to be able to do as you need.  You can add yourself to the accounts once the divorce is final.  Good luck. 


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