This” big” Bank says that there is no record of the account, yet I have my mother’s check book, cancelled checks, bank statements and proof that my name and spouse’s name and signatures are on the account, also checks printed with all three names. I have her death certificate. Her state’s “unclaimed property” division told us over the phone that dormant funds in her name were never received.. The Bank manager says that all records are” purged” after a time that the bank determines. I have read that dormant accounts are easy prey to employee theft. Any advice?

Answers provided by Chilina Law Firm

Bank’s will typically send several letters on accounts that have gone dormant (meaning accounts that have had no activity on them for a period of time). If there is no response to the sent dormant account letters, the bank will then escheat (pronounced, es-cheet) the funds to the State of California. This is a common practice. For a definition of escheat, please see the below link. Commencing probate of your mother’s estate should allow you (or other heirs) to receive the money from the State of California if the bank in fact escheated the funds. I recommend that you hire an attorney to assist you in this matter.

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