Asked in Criminal Law and Banking for North Carolina

Q: Can an authorized user on a checking account go in and cash to the owners checks and make changes

The authorized user on my grandmother's account has been cashing her checks and not giving them to her and also making serious changes to the account without the account owner's presence is this legal

Related Topics:
1 Lawyer Answer

Bruce Alexander Minnick

Answered
  • Business Law Lawyer
  • Tallahassee, FL

A: There is a very common belief that there is a difference between an "authorized user" of a personal bank account and a "co-owner" of a personal bank account. While there are several different kinds of bank accounts, access to each type of bank account is either defined in the contract sometimes appearing on the back of an "account signature card" or on a longer written contract executed at the bank-- with a copy given to the person(s) signing the account contract.

If the person you are concerned about is a co-owner or authorized user on your grandmother's account, the acts about which you complain are not illegal. Caveat: This is not to say that the person caring for your grandmother is doing everything properly; but that fiduciary issue is completely separate from the banking issue you asked.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.