If my wife has been paying her now late uncle’s bills for him using his money and her name is on the account, it is hers?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If my wife has been paying her now late uncle’s bills for him using his money and her name is on the account, it is hers?

He was in assisted living. About 8 months ago, he put her name on his bank account so that she could sign all the checks with her name. He passed away last month. He had a Will but she wants to know if any of the money in the account is legally hers or does it all go into the estate?

Asked on January 25, 2016 under Estate Planning, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

It depends what you mean by "he put her name on his bank account." 
IF he made it an actual joint bank account, then the money is hers: when owner of a joint account dies, the money in it goes to the other owner.
But if he merely gave her signing authority (e.g. authority to write checks) over the account, but it was still only his account, then the money all goes to the estate.


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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption