Chicago, IL asked in Estate Planning and Banking for Illinois

Q: Hi! I’m asking on behalf of my grandfather. His late sister left him money in a CD along with his niece. The bank is

Located in Texas and they are stating that we have to travel to Houston and be there at the same in order to sign documents and dissolve the CD. We are in the dead of winter and my grandfather is not up for travel. Can’t the bank make concessions and complete this virtually or send the proper documents notarized?

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1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: Based on the situation you have described, here are a few suggestions that may help:

- Contact the bank and explain your grandfather's health/mobility issues and the challenges of traveling at this time. Politely request if there is any way the bank can accommodate getting the required signatures another way.

- Ask the bank if the documents can be mailed/emailed to both parties for notarized signatures instead of requiring everyone to physically come in. Many banks will work with customers on a case by case basis.

- You may also want to inquire if the bank would allow a representative with power of attorney to sign on behalf of your grandfather. Proper POA paperwork would likely need to be in place.

- For the niece's signature, confirm if the bank will permit the documents to be mailed to her location to be signed/notarized without having to also travel to the bank location.

- If the bank won't budge, consider consulting an attorney. There may be legal ways to compel the bank to find reasonable accommodations for dissolving the CD given your grandfather's reasonable constraints.

The key is to communicate the issues in a clear but friendly manner. Be persistent in pushing for accommodations, but understanding if there are specific legal reasons the bank says they cannot. With some patience and escalation though, many banks will work to find solutions.

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