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Only joint accounts for kids?

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Question: 
Minors in our state can open deposit accounts. Can our bank refuse to open a checking account for a minor unless it is jointly owned with an adult family member?
Answer: 

Before you decide upon such a policy, you should check with legal counsel. The language in some states' laws giving minors the capacity to open accounts ironically might conflict with joint account ownership. (For example, it might say that an account can only be held in the sole name of the minor.) If you have a kid who is earning money (child actor, perhaps) and you put an adult on the account as a joint owner, you are empowering the adult to access the funds and the minor child really doesn’t have the legal capacity to agree to that.

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Learn more about Mary Beth Guard’s Accounts for Babies, Kids, Teens webinar.

First published on 10/17/2021

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