Should my partner and I open a joint account?

Updated: Sep 16, 2020

A joint account is a bank account or brokerage account opened by more than one owner. Married couples often have joint accounts, as do business partners, as well as aging parents who need their adult children to handle their finances.

Typically, married couples open joint bank accounts for the ease of handling finances, including paying bills, from a single account. Plus, in the unfortunate instance that one of the account holders dies or becomes incapacitated, the other account owner has full legal access. Without a joint account, getting access to a deceased spouse's account can be more difficult.

However, you want to make sure that you have full trust in the person you open an account with. While it makes it easier for handling finances, if your co-owner is irresponsible or your relationship sours, he or she could withdraw some or all of your shared money.

It's also important to note that when you open a joint account you also take on responsibility for any debt. Financial institutions can cease funds in your joint account to pay for debt that your co-owner may have. Additionally, if there are overdrafts on the account, it affects both of your credit scores.

I can help advise you on the benefits of a joint account and if it's right for you. Schedule an appointment with me today to look at your particular financial situation.

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