Does right of survivorship and TOD have the same meaning?

UPDATED: Aug 28, 2012

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Does right of survivorship and TOD have the same meaning?

My husband is ill and our paid for condo is in both of our names with right of survivorship.

Asked on August 28, 2012 under Estate Planning, Ohio


Catherine Blackburn / Blackburn Law Firm

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The effect of a right of survivorship and a "transfer on death" (TOD) account is the same.  If you and your husband bought the condo while you were married, the title to it is held in a "tenancy by the entireties." Tenancy by the entireties applies only to married couples and includes the right of survivorship.  (Other persons can gain a right of survivorship by taking title to property as "joint tenants with a right of survivorship."  The effect is the same.)  This means that the property automatically passes to the surviving spouse upon the death of the other spouse. 

TOD usually applies to stocks or brokerage accounts and can apply to bank accounts.  This is a special way to hold title to these accounts and provides that the account should be transferred upon the death of the primary account-holder to a named beneficiary.  If you are the named beneficiary on a TOD account, it will be transferred to you if your husband passes away.

I am sorry you are facing this situation and hope this answer has been helpful.

FYI - I am admitted to practice law in Ohio and Florida.

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