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JB Umphrey
JB Umphrey, Attorney
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Explains legal matters based on 14+ years experience.
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My bank, Wells Fargo opened my safe deposit box without my

Resolved Question:

My bank, Wells Fargo opened my safe deposit box without my permision. I had advice from one of their officers to call a lawyer. Are they allowed to do this?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for using JustAnswer!
Please clarify: why was the box opened?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
The bank was moving one branch to another location, I was notify of this, I think the lettef said no other action was needed on my part. I did go to my old branch to find out if they moved the box yet, they informed the box was moved to new location, I felt very safe with that answer, I have been banking with this bank for about 40 years, even though the name changed quiet a bit. When I did go to the new branch to open my box they informed me it was punched opened. My mouth stayed opened when I heard that news. I asked the lady what did they do with the contents, she informed me it was sent to the big branch office, which is in center city I asked her who gave them permission to open the box, she said that a letter was sent out to me, I never got a letter from the bank stateing their were going to open it, or I would have went to the bank to take out the contents.
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 5 years ago.
Thank you. Please clarify: are any contents missing?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
What more , do you need to know?
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 5 years ago.
Is anything missing from your box? Did you lose any items?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I did get there to find out. The box was in two names, the other person is now deceased, but the box was set up either or could get into the box without the other.

Now they are asking for a death certificate which I already gave three times after she died for our other joint accounts. They not only want a death certicate they want something from they the city about a will. She did not have a will, but our accounts were set up that she could get anything out of the accounts without me , and vice a versa.

Do I have any actions I could take. I think they should have sent the letter, certified, so I could sign for it.
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 5 years ago.
I am sorry but you're still not answering my question: are any items from the box missing?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I explained, I did not get there yet, I want to know are they allowed to open your safe deposit box without your permission?
Expert:  JB Umphrey replied 5 years ago.
They can open the box, without your permission, if there is a court order or if you abandoned it.
In terms of damages, you have only suffered a legal injury if it appears that any of your property is missing. If your property is missing, then file a police report and file a claim with the bank (which will likely be covered by its insurance company).
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