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Stephen G.
Stephen G., Sr Income Tax Expert
Category: Tax
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My social security and federal retirement annuity are deposited

Customer Question

My social security and federal retirement annuity are deposited electronically monthly in my checking account and total about $50,000 per year. Can I make my daughter a joint owner of that account and if I become incapacitated, heaven forbid, can she make payments for my care by means of the joint checking account (funds permitting)?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Stephen G. replied 1 year ago.
Hello, my name is***** & I'll be helping you today. My goal is to give you a complete & accurate answer that you can understand.
To answer your question directly, yes you can make her a joint owner on the checking account where your Social Security and Federal Retirement Annuity payments are deposited. Once the money goes into your account, the source of the funds ceases to be important.
However, absent establishing a Living Trust, I suggest that you consider that you have a "Durable Power of Attorney" prepared, which would allow your daughter (if that is your wish) to manage your other bank & securities accounts while you are alive should you become incapacitated.
You can either make the "Durable Power of Attorney" effective immediately, or upon a medical doctor certifying that you are no longer able to manage your financial affairs. The "Durable" aspect covers that possibility.
How you structure that depends upon the number & relationship among your beneficiaries and who you trust to carry out your wishes should you no longer to be able to do so.
Also, despite the fact that you have TOD & POD accounts, you should also have a will to take care of anything you might own in your own name, that may "slip through the cracks" down the road. Not only does the will cover the disposition of your property not otherwise taken care of, but it fixes the responsibility for winding up your affairs, paying your final expenses and taking care of any lingering bills, etc. The reason that this is necessary is that the "Durable Power of Attorney" ceases to be effective upon your death and is no longer of any use. Most people would make their Executor (or Executrix), the same individual as your Durable Power of Attorney.
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