If you own funds in a bank in Washington state, it’s essential to create a will and designate a beneficiary to receive them. Otherwise, distributing your money will be handled by another party, which may not be what you would like. Creating an estate plan allows you to make this decision ahead of time.
Locating bank accounts when your parent dies
When a parent dies and they have a will and estate plan, knowing who to distribute the funds to is easy. However, when these steps haven’t been taken, it creates more work for those left behind. If you’re in charge of tending to their affairs, you’ll need to search through their documents and see if they have any paper statements. Searching through emails is another option if you have access. Contacting local banks and credit unions can also be done.
Accessing bank funds after a person dies
Creating a will makes it easy to pass on assets to a beneficiary. Once you die, they can go to the bank to claim their funds. This action will require a state ID or driver’s license and a certified copy of the death certificate. Presenting these documents to the bank allows them to distribute the funds to you.
Dying without a will or estate plan makes it challenging to distribute your assets
Failing to create a will when you have funds in a bank account and die means it will sit there until your account goes dormant. At some point, the bank will notice there’s been zero activity and distribute the remaining funds to the state.
Planning what happens to your assets when you die is best
When you work hard in your life to accumulate assets, you probably don’t want them going to the state after you pass away, especially if you have children. Ensuring your wishes are met when you have assets to distribute is best done using a will.