Legal Or Illegal?

  |     |   1 posts since 2019

My sister was beneficiary of my parents cds- she was suppose to split them equally amongst us. We just found out, she has been signing and cashing my deceased mothers cd checks for the pass 14 yrs, through a friends check cashing place? Is this illegal? Even if she was sole recipient of this one cd? She claims that she had cashed the cds in to paid for funeral expenses- we discovered she is still receiving quarterly or bi monthly check in my mom’s name.

  |     |   16 posts since 2017
Fourth word in your post should give you a clue.
  |     |   111 posts since 2019
You said "she was suppose[d] to split them equally amongst us". One key thing here is going to be, how was this "supposed to" commitment defined legally? If in a will or trust, you may have a chance even after all these years. If not, ...
  |     |   527 posts since 2010
Could it have been an annuity?

After the death of an annuity owner, annuities can be left to a beneficiary selected by the owner. ... After an annuitant dies, insurance companies distribute any remaining payments to beneficiaries in a lump sum or stream of payments
  |     |   930 posts since 2010
You actually have not given enough information for anyone to really know anything. First, if she was sole beneficiary, then legally the money is her's, it is outside any will.

But you say she is still getting checks in your mother's name. Something sounds wrong here. Was this a POD account? Or was the account in an outside trust, or maybe just part of a will? Is you sister actually the beneficiary, or did you mean she is the executor? A POD account would simply be closed out to the beneficiary, it would not still exist 14 years later and all through that time be issuing checks in the name of a dead person.

I am suspecting your sister is executor of either the will or a trust the money was in. Regardless, she cannot sign your mother's name, she can only sign her's as executor or some other designation that gives her the power to sign.

Because its 14 years alter, have to think the money was in a trust and still is. For that, you have to read the trust papers to see what it says is to be done with the money.
  |     |   24 posts since 2018
it depends on what the full facts are. If the institution paid her out each time, that implies that only your sister's name was shown as the POD beneficiary (that's common in situations where the institution allows only one POD beneficiary to be named on the CD). if that's the case, she has legally accepted the CD proceeds. However, it's common in that type of situation that the parent wanted the siblings to share equally and made a side agreement with them before she passed that all the siblings had to share the proceeds, despite the sole beneficiary designation. If that's your fact situation, hopefully the agreement was in writing and signed by your mother and both sisters, because, if the agreement was only verbal (unless your sister agrees that there was such a verbal agreement) you have no evidence to prove you are entitled to anything. If there was such an agreement, then your sister would be in violation because she kept 100% of the proceeds, possibly fraudulently (something you would need to dicuss with an attorney), and she would be required to pay over to you your share of all 14 years' worth of proceeds (after subtracting the funeral expenses she can prove with documentation).
  |     |   930 posts since 2010
I doubt any such agreement can override the trust account, which is what a POD account is.

But more of an issue is that the OP says the sister has been signing and cashing the mother's CD checks. That makes no sense.

Question: Has the bank ever been informed of the mother's death? Is the sister power of attorney for the mother, and since the bank does not know the mother died, the sister is continuing to use the account? That would be a criminal offense.

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