Klamath Falls, OR asked in Estate Planning and Banking for Oregon

Q: I live in Oregon. My husband died in August 2019 and has recieved a check. How do I cash it?

He had no estate and I am his only survivor and beneficiary.

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3 Lawyer Answers
Nina Whitehurst
Nina Whitehurst
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Crossville, TN
  • Licensed in Oregon

A: Please repost your question with the amount of the check. It makes a difference.

Joanne Reisman
Joanne Reisman
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Portland, OR
  • Licensed in Oregon

A: Did you have a joint account? If so, you can just deposit it in your joint account without any endorsement. It should go right through. I would do it through an atm or a banking app and not in person at the bank as they might ask questions. As long as you are 100% sure that the money is yours as his sole heir and survivor, then there is no one to complain. The only caveat I need to tell you is that you are using his money that was also available to pay his final debts. So even if you are able to run it through your joint account you still need to pay his creditors to the extent that he left any money at the time of his death.

If you don't have a joint account then another option is to figure out if it is the type of check that might be reissued in your name. Sometimes someone who knows you and the situation will reissue the check, like his employer.

If neither of those options work then you can consider filing a small estates affidavit that will give you the power to manage his estate.

Theressa Hollis agrees with this answer

Theressa Hollis
Theressa Hollis
Answered
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Portland, OR
  • Licensed in Oregon

A: I am sorry for your loss. If you have been unable to negotiate the check and it is under $75,000 you may need a small estate affidavit. You can locate forms online that will work for Oregon but it's often best to hire a probate attorney to assist you to make sure you do it correctly.

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