How to claim money after the death of the SBI account holder



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Before filing a death claim with the (SBI), it is important that the claimant know two things. First, whether the deceased person’s account was held jointly with another person or whether it was a single deposit account. Two, whether the applicants were registered by the deceased account holder or not.

Here is an overview of the process for filing a claim with SBI following the death of an account holder.

  • When the account is held jointly with a survival clause

A survival clause savings account means that the account is managed as – either or survivor, former or survivor, later or survivor and any person or survivor etc. This would mean that for financial transactions, the signature of either the first account holder or one of the other account holders would be required. However, in the case of non-financial transactions, the signatures of all bank account holders may be required.

If the SBI savings account was jointly held (with a survival clause) and no appointments were recorded, then the process for filing a death claim is fairly straightforward.

The surviving account holder will have to submit a written request informing the bank of the death of the account holder along with the copy of the death certificate and the copy of the deceased’s identity document. The copy of the identity document of the deceased account holder will be certified by the surviving account holder.

The bank will then ask you to submit a new, duly completed account opening form. A surviving holder will be asked to provide a copy of PAN and proof of address such as copy of Aadhaar card, passport, driver’s license, etc. and photographs with the form.

Once the documents are submitted to the originating branch, the bank will begin the process of transferring money to the surviving holder. The surviving account holder will receive SMS from the bank with updates on it. He will receive a new checkbook from the bank. Additionally, if the surviving cardholder has an ATM card in the name of the deceased account holder, then it should be blocked. This can be done either by calling customer service or via Net banking. Once the ATM card has been blocked, the account holder can request a new one either by submitting a form at a domiciliary branch or via Net banking.

According to the SBI website, for term deposits, survivors can continue with the account by removing the name of the deceased depositor from TDR / STDR / Other FD. Also, if the survivors want to close the accounts, they can do so. In the case of term deposits, at the request of the legal heirs / representatives / nominees, the deposit can be split into two or more receipts individually in the name of the legal heirs / representatives / nominees. It should not be interpreted as a premature withdrawal of the term deposit for the purpose of imposing a penalty clause for premature withdrawal provided that the period and the total amount of the deposit are not changed. Interest is paid at the rate applicable for the period actually in progress.

  • When the account is jointly held without a survival clause

A savings bank account is said to be operated on a joint basis when the signature of all account holders is required to perform financial and non-financial transactions. When the account is held jointly without a survival clause, then in the event of the death of one of the holders, the balances may be paid jointly to the surviving holders and to the legal heirs of the deceased.

Here is an example of how it will work: X and Y have a joint account. In the event of X’s death, the savings account balances will be paid jointly to X’s legal heirs and to the surviving holder Y.

To pay the balances to the legal heirs of deceased account holders, the bank may request documents such as inheritance certificate, will and probate, letter of administration and / or general administration order from the district court. The bank may require the legal heirs to go through the KYC process and provide a letter of indemnity and surety. The documents that the legal heirs are required to present depend on the amount on which the claim is made.

  • Settlement of the complaint if the appointment is registered

For the purpose of settling a claim for a deceased bank account, the nominee is considered a mere custodian of the asset who has the responsibility of legitimately handing over the asset to the legal heirs. In the event of the death of the sole account holder or the death of all joint holders of a joint account, an agent may file the claim with the bank.

For example, in SBI, the applicant must submit a completed “complaint form”. This form must be collected from a bank branch. In addition to the completed form, the candidate will have to paste a photo and submit the following documents available with him:

a) Original passbook / (S) TDR of the account

b) Checkbook

c) ATM card of the deceased

d) Death certificate

e) Application receipt

f) Proof of identification of the candidate demonstrating a relationship with the deceased

g) Proof of address of the candidate

There are various official documents that a nominee can provide to establish their relationship with the deceased account holder. For example, if the wife is a candidate, the relationship can be established through an Aadhaar card, voter ID card, passport showing the name of the husband. Likewise, if the brother is a candidate, proof of identity such as PAN may be submitted on the grounds that the deceased brother and the candidate have the same father name on both official documents (i.e. from deceased and candidate), according to an SBI bank official at Delhi’s Dilshad Garden branch.

The candidate must also provide the signatures of two witnesses. Depending on the bank’s website, cookies can be any of the following:

a) Magistrate or judicial officer

b) Any central / state government official or bank official

c) Two people acceptable to the bank

If the designated person is a minor, the guardian appointed by the deceased account holder will be required to submit the documents on behalf of the minor child.

  • If there is no nominee and no joint owner

If the deceased’s savings account does not have a registered agent and is not a joint account, the bank will pay the money to the legal heirs.

According to the bank’s website, “As disposal with legal representation takes time, to improve customer service, our bank designed a system for settling accounts without producing legal representation on the basis of compensation – cum – affidavit. This is only applicable when: a) the client has died without a will i.e. without a will and b) there is no dispute between the legal heirs and all legal heirs (other than those who provided a disclaimer letter) join in indemnifying the bank and there is no reasonable doubt as to the authenticity of the claimant (s) being the sole legal heirs. ”The disclaimer can be accessed here .

Keep in mind that the documents you will need to submit depend on the amount of the claim i.e. the total balance plus interest.

If the amount claimed does not exceed Rs 5 lakh, then the bank will ask you to submit the following documents:

  • Photocopy of the death certificate (the original will be verified by the bank)
  • KYC details of all legal heirs.
  • Applicant (s) account details (if available)
  • Revised claim form duly completed and signed by claimant (s).
  • The declaration in the revised claim form regarding the legal heirs of the deceased must be signed by-

i) An independent person well known to the family of the deceased but unrelated to them and acceptable to the Bank OR

ii) By any account holder (respected KYC) of the Bank known to the family of the deceased but unrelated to them OR

iii) By any government. Official whose signature can be verified by the Bank.

  • Stamped letter of compensation (COS 540) from the claimant (s).
  • Disclaimer letter (if applicable)

On the other hand, if the amount claimed exceeds Rs 5 lakh, then the bank will ask you to submit the following documents:

  • Photocopy of the death certificate (the original will be verified by the bank)
  • KYC details of all legal heirs.
  • Applicant (s) account details (if available)
  • Revised claim form duly completed and signed by claimant (s).
  • The declaration in the revised claim form concerning the legal heirs of the deceased must be sworn under oath before the judicial magistrate or the notary public according to the attached format (COS-539, Annex-B) from: –

i) An independent person well known to the family of the deceased but unrelated to them and acceptable to the Bank OR

ii) By any account holder (respected KYC) of the Bank known to the family of the deceased but unrelated to them OR

iii) By any government. Official whose signature can be verified by the Bank.

  • Stamped Compensation Letter (COS 540) from the claimant (s) plus a valid bond for the amount or two jointly valid bonds for the amount. Any legal heir who signed the disclaimer letter in favor of other legal heirs can vouch if he is independently good for the amount of the claim.
  • Surety details (with proof) for the compilation of the surety opinion report (according to Annex-I)
  • Disclaimer letter (if applicable)

The application form with the various annexes is accessible here.

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