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LegalGems, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 10257
Experience:  Private Practice; Elder Law Attorney; Estate Planning; Attorney Mentor
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Hope you can help. Im trying to close out my mothers safe

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Hope you can help. I'm trying to close out my mother's safe deposit box at Citi Bank in San Diego California. She passed away in march of 2009. I am the soul beneficiary in her will. The will was filed in San Diego Probate Services offices on April 1 2009. The total property was $80,000 in a mobile home that was gifted to me before she died and about $300.00 in cash in her bank account which for some reason they let me close out in 2009. I have both keys to the box, I have been paying the $25 a month rent on the box for the last 4 years just because I didn't want to deal with the crap at Citi but I'm done and want to open it and see whats in there which might be nothing or something very emotional. I called San Diego Probate Services And they told me to Print up A form "Declaration for Collection Of Property Without Probate" (Prob. code 13101 ) Have it notarized give it to the bank and I would be good to go. But the manager said legal said NO I have to get a "court order stating I'm the beneficiary of the box". San Diego Probate Services says this form is enough because it's less than $150,000 Citi says the form is no good and I have to go to court and spend money on an Attorney for a Court order. I'm so Pissed I've been a Citi customer for 13 years and I feel like just giving them the keys and saying you keep what's in there and closing out my account. I've tried calling back East to talk To there Legal Dept, Impossible. Can you tell me what to do to get this resolved once and for all so I don't have to go into court. Thank You Roger

LegalGems :

Hi; My goal is to provide you with great service - if you have any questions during our chat, please ask! I'll do my best to ensure your satisfaction! Banks are unfortunately notorious for doing this. Here is an official form that may held expedite this: Also, if you show them a copy of this statute (PC 13105) accessible in a moment via a link, they should comply, as failure to do so can result in them paying your attorney fees. 13105. (a) If the requirements of Sections 13100 to 13104, inclusive, are satisfied: (1) The person or persons executing the affidavit or declaration as successor of the decedent are entitled to have the property described in the affidavit or declaration paid, delivered, or transferred to them. (2) A transfer agent of a security described in the affidavit or declaration shall change the registered ownership on the books of the corporation from the decedent to the person or persons executing the affidavit or declaration as successor of the decedent. (b) If the holder of the decedent's property refuses to pay, deliver, or transfer any personal property or evidence thereof to the successor of the decedent within a reasonable time, the successor may recover the property or compel its payment, delivery, or transfer in an action brought for that purpose against the holder of the property. If an action is brought against the holder under this section, the court shall award reasonable attorney's fees to the person or persons bringing the action if the court finds that the holder of the decedent's property acted unreasonably in refusing to pay, deliver, or transfer the property to them as required by subdivision (a).

LegalGems :

It is my experience that once they see that statute ,the problem is solved so to speak and access is given.


Thank you for your help. I already presented that form 13101-13106 and had it notarized to the bank and they refused to honor it. I will try to show them the that they will be monetarily responsible if they don't honor it. There such hard asses. Hope this makes them do something. I'm so tired of this. Roger

LegalGems :

It is really unfortunate as it is not uncommon. However, that statute usually gets them to see reason. It would be nice, as a courtesy to their customers, if they would get up to date on legal requirements so people who are having to deal with probate don't have to deal with this on top of it. You are welcome, and best wishes to you.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Everything worked out and armed with your information I was able to access my Mother's Safe Deposit Box. Thank You for your Help. Roger

So very glad to hear! Thank you for taking the time to follow up with me. I'm glad the bank saw reason- hopefully they will remember this the next time an individual comes to them seeking access- so very frustrating! But very glad it worked out for you with minimal hassle. Take care!