What liability does a bank have if it disburses account funds to only some of the survivors designated on an account?

UPDATED: Feb 14, 2012

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What liability does a bank have if it disburses account funds to only some of the survivors designated on an account?

Now the account is closed and two survivors were ignored. The bank is a national chain.

Asked on February 14, 2012 under Estate Planning, Maryland


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Good question. In the situation that you have written about, it seems that the bank would have a problem if money was not disbursed to all members on a designated bank account. Custom and practice is for the bank to receive a certified agreement signed by all beneficiaries on a designated bank account for distribution purposes or issue a check jointly to all people on the account.

Most likely the bank might be obligated to some of the beneficiaries if the people who received the payment do not agree to redistribute some of it to the other beneficiaries.

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