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I am the POD and TOD on a bank and investment account. Am I responsible for using these funds to pay debt of the deceased?

Americus, GA |

I am also the executor of the will. From what I've read, a beneficiary named as a POD & TOD does not use these funds to pay debts of a deceased person. I was also named in the will to receive the deceased's vehicle, which is paid for. Because this was not set up as a TOD, and if I sell the car, am I obligated to use the proceeds from the sell of the car to pay the deceased's debts?

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Attorney answers 3


Property that passes outside the will, like POD, automatically become someone else's property at death. Property that passes through the will must be used to settle the estate's debts first.

Mr. Goldstein is a Virginia-licensed attorney only. The information is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation. Answering this question does not in any way constitute legal representation. Contacting Mitchell Goldstein or the Goldstein Law Group does not constitute legal representation, nor is any information you provide protected by attorney-client privilege until otherwise advised.



I also paid for the deceased's funeral expenses on my personal credit card. Since I have to sell the car to pay the deceased's debts, will I be able to use proceeds from the sell of the car to "reimburse" myself for the funeral cost?

Mitchell Paul Goldstein

Mitchell Paul Goldstein


You need to talk to a local probate attorney.


No to the first question, but anything in the estate is subject to the claims of creditors.


Also, jointly held property in many states does not become property of the estate. You should seek the counsel of a local estate attorney if the amounts justify the legal fee so you can wrap up the estate without any future liability.

Disclaimer: This answer does not constitute legal advice. I am admitted in the States of New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts only and make no attempt to opine on matters of law that are not relevant to those three States. This advice is based on general principles of law that may or may not relate to your specific situation. Facts and laws change and these possible changes will affect the advice provided here. Consult an attorney in your locale before you act on any of this advice. You should not rely on this advice alone and nothing in these communications creates an attorney client relationship.

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