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#2226334 - 11/26/19 03:00 PM Bail Magistrate Accounts
soccermom Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 53
Massachusetts
We've recently come across 2 personal accounts, with sole owners, that are utilizing the accounts to run bail money through. They're depositing cash and either writing checks to the courts or obtaining cashier's checks. They came to our attention because they both recently needed CTRs. The customer's were told they couldn't use the personal accounts for that purpose. When our legal department got involved they became concerned, the cash doesn't belong to the individual and if something were to happen to them we have nothing on file if the Commonwealth were to come after the money. Our legal department reached out to a representative from the Commonwealth courts and they were less than cooperative, unwilling to provide any documentation and basically saying that they were going to file a complaint and 'all their bail magistrates' have accounts like that. I feel that our concerns are justified, I would think that they would need an account similar to a lottery account listing the court as the beneficiary (which we don't currently have). Has anyone else run into this type of activity and if so how do you handle it?

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#2226338 - 11/26/19 04:13 PM Re: Bail Magistrate Accounts soccermom
rlcarey Offline
10K Club
rlcarey
Joined: Jul 2001
Posts: 83,363
Galveston, TX
If you and your legal department are not happy with this, just close the accounts. Who are they going to complain too? You are under no obligation to bank anyone that you don't want to - including government employees. If they are depositing cash solely for the purpose of writing a check to the courts, then any CTR would have to include the "on behalf of" person on the CTR - sort of like an IOLTA account. Likely, since they are also acting as an individual, they might also be subject to reporting that cash transaction on form 8300 themselves.
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#2226343 - 11/26/19 05:14 PM Re: Bail Magistrate Accounts soccermom
soccermom Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 53
Massachusetts
Thank you Randy. They said they were going to complain to the Division of Banks but as you stated, we're not obligated to bank them. In all my years of banking, I hadn't come across this and our legal department is finding limited guidance as well.
Appreciate your feedback.

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