Q: My husband and I have an online savings account which does not allow titling in the name of a Trust. However they do allow naming the Trust as the beneficiary. If we were to name the Trust as the beneficiary, what happens when the first one passes? Does the surviving spouse become the owner of the account with complete access to its monies or is the account frozen until the surviving spouse passes? --Confused, Sacramento, CA
A: I have not dealt with this situation before. I am unclear about whether the account belongs to the survivor after the first death or passes to the trust at that point. Why would the bank let you title the account in the name of the trust at any point (as the beneficiary) when they won't let you now?
The answers to your questions should be contained in the fine print of the bank information about this type of account. You could try discussing these issues with someone at the bank, to see if the explanations provide you the comfort you need.
If the advantages that a trust offers for this account are a priority for you, and you cannot locate the answers you need to understand how it works at this bank, I would move the account to a bank that allows the account to be titled in the trust.