Joint Owner Bank Account

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Joint Owner Bank Account

I discovered I am a joint owner on my
mother’s checking account. She died Feb.
2017. On the date if death she had
20,000. In the account, it has since
increased to 45,000. How much of the
funds am I entitled to as the surviving
Joint Owner?

Asked on May 19, 2018 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Most bank accounts held jointly come with what's known as a "right of survivorship." This means that on the death of one of the owners, the account and the money in it does not go through probate  or become part of the deceased's estate, but rather instantly and automatically (on provision of proof of death--i.e. a death certificate--to the bank) becomes the sole property of the surviving owner(s). You should be be entitled to all the funds.


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