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Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Old Nov 5th 2023, 7:41 am
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Default Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

I am getting conflicting advice on this matter. From both a solicitor and an MM2H agent, I am told that regardless of being Joint accounts with either to sign, that the monies will be frozen by the Bank on orders of the Govt until probate is settled.

As there are no assets (property etc) apart from the money in the bank, and my Will leaves everything to my wife, I see no need to wait for probate. As it stands, according to the info I have been given by the above, my wife would be left without money to live on, or anything else that was needed, and have been warned that this actually happens.. Can not believe this is correct, but this is Malaysia, so who knows.

Can anyone confirm if this is correct, or have any experience of this sort of situation.

Many Thanks.
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Old Nov 5th 2023, 7:56 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by ken911
I am getting conflicting advice on this matter. From both a solicitor and an MM2H agent, I am told that regardless of being Joint accounts with either to sign, that the monies will be frozen by the Bank on orders of the Govt until probate is settled.
Yes, this is correct. It is one of the most frequently heard reasons for expats to draw up a "local last will" to specify that the Malaysian bank account(s) goes to the wife in case the husband passes away. This will speed up things, is what I've heard.
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Old Nov 6th 2023, 10:58 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by ken911
I am getting conflicting advice on this matter. From both a solicitor and an MM2H agent, I am told that regardless of being Joint accounts with either to sign, that the monies will be frozen by the Bank on orders of the Govt until probate is settled.

As there are no assets (property etc) apart from the money in the bank, and my Will leaves everything to my wife, I see no need to wait for probate. As it stands, according to the info I have been given by the above, my wife would be left without money to live on, or anything else that was needed, and have been warned that this actually happens.. Can not believe this is correct, but this is Malaysia, so who knows.

Can anyone confirm if this is correct, or have any experience of this sort of situation.

Many Thanks.
Not jiust in Malaysia; it's the same in many countries. Hence the reason that both my husband and I have our own bank accounts in addition to a joint account. If anything happens to him or me, the other won't be left with no money to carry on living day to day until probate is settled. Simply having a will that says your bank account goes to your spouse is not enough. If someone chooses to contest the will then your spouse could be waiting a while to be able to access the account while the will is before the courts.
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Old Nov 8th 2023, 8:20 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Many thanks for the replies. Seems one needs to be very careful how you manage your own money in these banks.

Regards
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Old Nov 9th 2023, 8:17 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by ken911
Many thanks for the replies. Seems one needs to be very careful how you manage your own money in these banks.
The best advice I heard was to "empty your bank accounts the day before you pass away." (or live forever)
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Old Nov 10th 2023, 12:05 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Hi Dorothy,
You say that there will be delays if if someone chooses to contest the will.
What about if one has a local will mentioning that the bank account goes to the spouse and nobody contests it?
Would it be OK then? OK meaning continued access to the account for the surviving spouse.


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Old Nov 10th 2023, 11:53 pm
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

As I understand it, even with a ‘local will’, access to bank accounts is blocked until probate has been granted
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Old Nov 11th 2023, 8:44 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by hnd
As I understand it, even with a ‘local will’, access to bank accounts is blocked until probate has been granted
Indeed, that is also what I have been told. There will be some delay, caused by the review and acceptance of the local will. However, that delay is much shorter than when an "overseas will" needs to be produced, and validated to be a valid will, plus have it confirmed that that will also applies to items in Malaysia. In other words: the execution of a foreign will in Malaysia will take a much longer time.
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Old Nov 13th 2023, 12:24 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

This might be a stupid question but, why even inform the bank that the husband/wife has died. How would they find out?
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Old Nov 13th 2023, 7:05 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Why not keep some money in a secret location, known only to your spouse and you, in your apartment?
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Old Nov 13th 2023, 6:14 pm
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by Fenella
This might be a stupid question but, why even inform the bank that the husband/wife has died. How would they find out?
I wondered about that too, thinking, well you would have to tell them sometime - but after probate?

Originally Posted by Hovite
Why not keep some money in a secret location, known only to your spouse and you, in your apartment?
Absolutely, keep something to see you through for a while.
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Old Nov 13th 2023, 11:28 pm
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by Fenella
This might be a stupid question but, why even inform the bank that the husband/wife has died. How would they find out?
Are you serious? What would you do with the body? Keep it in the bath? You’re going to need a death certificate even to start the probate process and the doctor issuing that will be required to notify the authorities of the death.
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Old Nov 15th 2023, 3:43 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by hnd
Are you serious? What would you do with the body? Keep it in the bath? You’re going to need a death certificate even to start the probate process and the doctor issuing that will be required to notify the authorities of the death.
This made me laugh - The freezer may be a better option!
We actually live on Bali so Malaysian authorities wouldn't be aware of the death. Even living in Malaysia, getting a death certificate, etc. Why would you need to inform the bank?
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Old Nov 15th 2023, 9:18 am
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Default Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by Fenella
Why would you need to inform the bank?
The risk (?) is that somebody else informs the bank. You can control what you tell your bank. But you can't control what others will tell.
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Old Dec 27th 2023, 12:53 am
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Exclamation Re: Freezing Joint Bank Accounts on death of husband

Originally Posted by Fenella
This made me laugh - The freezer may be a better option!
We actually live on Bali so Malaysian authorities wouldn't be aware of the death. Even living in Malaysia, getting a death certificate, etc. Why would you need to inform the bank?
As amusing (or as eerie) as this may sound, it happens. Google it and read (and heed).

In the '60s I had an elderly aunt in Canada who was known as "the cat lady of Saint-Antoine de Kent". On having passed her executor (my grandfather) found a detailed will and a long letter with many instructions. Her back shed had two large home freezers with top lids, of the kind popular in those days but maybe fortunately, now rarely seen in white goods stores.

I was there when we checked them. And found the frozen remains of some 60 cats, which she had bagged and nearly tagged with name, date of decease etcetera. All appeared to have passed away from natural causes, mostly from old age, so no cruelty on her part was involved. Her logic seems to have been that she was too old and too frail to dig so many holes and bury them. She also had a fondness for all of them, and wanted to have them close to hand.

A family conference was held. It was decided by unanimous vote to plough a nearby field and plant an orchard in her memory. Fertilized by the deceased cats. Which we did, with the help of a local contractor who had a bulldozer. In all 40+ apple, pear and cherry trees were planted as our family's way to mark Canada's Centennial Year (this was in 1967). The property is still in the family. All that feline blood and bone resulted in superb crops for many years. Many fruit pies and crumbled were baked and enjoyed in memory of those deceased cats. I have not been to Canada for a long time, but I believe the orchard is still producing good crops of fruit every year.

Comparing cats to people is drawing rather a long bow, but recently my partner indicated a wish to buy a similar large freezer. I am concerned and am tempted to redraft my will. Eternal life, preserving my remains until the day when medical science may be able to bring me back to whatever world will remain by then, is tempting, but nowadays somewhat less so than it was before the planet began its inevitable decline to an environmental hell.

On a more reasonable note, it is probably best to provide for one's partner with a separate small account, with enough $$$$ to ensure they will be able to live until one's will is probated. Assuming one has sufficient trust in their partner. In my case, I thought I did - but now the notion of that freezer in our house has me thinking about what hidden agenda(s) may lie in store for me.

PS Fenella, in Bali a fast cremation in Ubud (not advised to be done in one's back yard in Canggu or Sanur) could maybe easily sort out the "problem" of how to deal with the body.

Last edited by DownUnder69; Dec 27th 2023 at 12:55 am.
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