Closing a Bank Account After Someone Passes Away

Category: What To Do When Someone Dies


After somebody passes away, there are a number of administrative duties which need to be taken care of, some of which can be arranged by any member of the family or friendship group while others can only be carried out by the Executor of the Will.

Closing the bank account of somebody who has passed away is one of these responsibilities.

The Executor of the Will is the person who carries out the wishes of the person who has passed away following their death and their responsibilities will vary on what the Will stipulates.

Furthermore, their workload may increase if the estate left behind is sizable, as more assets will need to be accounted for and divided as per the instructions of the departed.

Managing different types of Bank Accounts

If the person who passed away had a joint bank account, nothing will need to be done as the full amount will be left for the other person.

If the bank account had one owner, the bank will need to be notified of the passing of your loved one with a Grant of Probate (we’ll come onto this) after which they will provide you with their specific policy.

High and low amounts of money left behind

Most banks have their own rules, however, in most cases if the amount of money is not significant, funds will be released immediately once a death certificate and Will has been provided.

On the other hand, if there is a substantial amount of money to be taken out of the account before its closure, it is likely that a Grant of Probate will be needed to release the funds.

How to gain a Grant of Probate

In order to obtain a Grant of Probate, the Executor of the Will is required to apply to the Probate Registry which includes a number of steps including filling out forms, paying the relevant taxes and swearing an oath during an interview.

Once the bank has received the Grant of Probate the funds will be released accordingly. This may be to one bank account or several depending on the Will.

Taking the correct amount of time

The process of dealing with splitting up an estate and closing a bank account can be strenuous during a time of bereavement, which is why we have a number of resources to take as much difficulty out of the situation as possible.

Making decisions under stress and while grieving is difficult so it is important to give yourself time and surround yourself with the correct support before undergoing any kind of important administrative tasks.