Thursday, May 23, 2013

Do Banks and Financial Institutions Usually Require Probate Before Releasing Funds?

Upon the demise of an individual, family members are seldom ever able to lay claim to his estate without first producing what is known as a probate certificate or document. The probate documents are those which authorize a person to look after the estate of a demised person to whom he is related, in usual cases the child of the deceased or the spouse of the deceased. It is imperative on the part of children and spouses of deceased persons to go ahead and procure probate documents from the court and to produce these before banks and financial institutions in which the deceased held accounts, in order to be able to access the money in these accounts.

Failure to produce the probate documents means that family members of the deceased person cannot lay claim to the money in his bank, unless of course he nominated a certain member of his family to access this money. The probate document cannot be secured by a person himself and he will have to hire the services of a legal officer in order to help him secure such a document in the first place.

How can you get a probate form

The probate forms are widely available online and can be downloaded on computers in a relatively easy manner. The time taken to download such a document ranges between ten to fifteen minutes depending upon the internet speed in a person's computer. Once the probate forms have been downloaded one has to take a print out and get these attested from a court of law. They have to be filled up and a time consuming legal procedure has to be followed in order to finally obtain the probate from the court. The probate is generally delivered to its recipient in person.

What after receiving a probate

Once the probate has been received the concerned person can present it to the bank or the financial institution at which the deceased held an account. Upon verification of the probate documents and a few other identification documents such as a passport, the bank will release the money in the account or open a new account in the same of the heir of the deceased or the spouse of the deceased.

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