Akron, OH asked in Banking for Ohio

Q: If a parent deposits money in my checking account. Is it their money or mine?

I'm looking to move out against my parent's wishes. I have a checking account. I'm the sole owner of but my parent has access to and transfers funds to use for my college education. There is no written agreement or contract on how the funds will be used. Can I still use the money or should I not touch it?

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1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Business Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: When money is deposited into your checking account, and you are the sole owner, legally, the funds typically become yours. However, since the money was given by your parents for a specific purpose, such as your college education, there's an implied understanding about how it should be used. The lack of a written agreement doesn't negate the moral or ethical considerations involved in using the money for purposes other than those intended by your parents.

Before deciding to use the funds, consider the potential consequences on your relationship with your parents. Moving out against their wishes and using money they provided could lead to trust issues or financial support being withdrawn. It's important to weigh the necessity of moving out against the potential strain on your relationship and financial security.

If possible, have an open conversation with your parents about your desire to move out and the reasons behind it. They might understand your perspective and support your decision, potentially offering to continue their financial support. If you decide to proceed without their consent, prepare for the practical and emotional implications, including the possibility of having to support yourself financially.

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