What to do if my mother passed away last month and the bank told me I would have to get an attorney to closer her account?

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What to do if my mother passed away last month and the bank told me I would have to get an attorney to closer her account?

I have since been told to contact the court house. I am her eldest son but she did not leave me or anyone for that matter as her POD (if I have the acronym right?). I do have her death certificate.

Asked on April 26, 2012 under Estate Planning, Washington

Answers:

Kenneth Berger / Kenneth A. Berger, Attorney at Law

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am sorry to hear of your loss.

It sounds like you will need to file a "probate" which is a lawsuit that allows the personal representative, to sign on the account, and withdraw the money, for the purpose of making a distribution to beneficiaries after the deceased' creditors are paid.

If the account was a POD, or payable on death account then the bank would have likely given you some forms to fill out and then you would get the money.

Probates can be complicated, so I suggest you contact an attorney to do the probate.

As always, my comments are only applicable to Washington State and are not a substitute for getting competent, local, and more comprehensive, legal help.


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