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Power of Attorney and Joint Deposit Accounts

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What is a Joint Deposit Account?

A joint deposit account is a bank account in which two or more people have ownership rights over the same account. Ownership rights can include the right for all account holders to withdraw or deal with the funds in the account, no matter who deposits the money into the account. At Coast Capital, joint deposit accounts must be opened under a joint membership. When you open a joint membership, you’ll have the option to open one or more deposit accounts. Each deposit account opened under a joint membership will be considered a joint deposit account.

As a joint member, you share equal access to the joint deposit account(s) under that membership and share equal responsibility for all the transactions made through the account(s). This means that unless you state otherwise, the other joint member(s) is free to make withdrawals or other transactions without your consent, and the funds in the account(s) may be subject to creditors’ rights or other claims that might exist against the other joint member(s). Joint deposit accounts also include the right of survivorship, meaning if one of the joint members dies, the assets in the joint deposit account(s) automatically pass to the other joint member(s) and do not form part of the deceased’s estate funds. Coast Capital’s Personal Account and Services Agreement outlines the terms and conditions applicable to joint deposit accounts. 

Additional information regarding joint deposit accounts is available on the Government of Canada’s website:  What every older Canadian should know about Powers of Attorney (for financial matters and property) and Joint Bank Accounts

What is a Power of Attorney?

A Power of Attorney is a legal document that you sign to give one or more persons the authority to manage your money and property on your behalf. In most of Canada, the person(s) you appoint is called an “attorney”. In spite of the term, the person(s) you choose does not have to be a lawyer, but should be someone you trust.

Among other requirements, you must be mentally capable at the time you sign any type of Power of Attorney for it to be valid. The legal definition of mental capacity may vary among provinces and territories, so we recommend consulting a lawyer before signing a Power of Attorney.

Additional information regarding Power of Attorney, including advantages, risks, and how to choose an attorney, is available on the Government of Canada’s website: What every older Canadian should know about Powers of Attorney (for financial matters and property) and Joint Bank Accounts

What type of Power of Attorney do we accept?

We do not offer our own form of Power of Attorney, but we would accept your own Power of Attorney, so long as it meets the following requirements:

  • it is signed by you;
  • it is witnessed and dated by a lawyer or notary;
  • it complies with the formal requirements of the region where it was signed (province/territory or foreign jurisdiction) and the region where it is accepted; and
  • It is the original, notarized or certified true copy.

We will not accept a Power of Attorney that:

  • does not meet one or more of the above requirements;
  • would require us to monitor the attorney's activity;
  • is unclear; or
  • is from another financial institution, because it would not allow the attorney to conduct transactions with Coast Capital.

How to set up a Power of Attorney?

When setting up a Power of Attorney with Coast Capital, you or your attorney will need to meet our standards for identification: you or your attorney will need to provide two pieces of acceptable identification, one of which must be government-issued and include a photo. Please refer to our website for a list of acceptable identification. We also require a specimen signature from your attorney and an original or original notarized copy of your existing Power of Attorney. Your attorney may be added to your existing account(s) in accordance with the existing Power of Attorney, but your attorney cannot open a new membership on your behalf.

If a Power of Attorney or an attorney's instructions required further review, we will inform you or your attorney that a review is required and will provide a general timeline for the review. If the review is related to potential financial abuse or other illegal activity, we are not required to inform the attorney, and may in fact be prohibited from informing the attorney about the review.

How to cancel the Power of Attorney?

The Power of Attorney can be cancelled at any time, as long as you’re not mentally incapacitated. You will need to provide us with written notice indicating that you wish to cancel the Power of Attorney.

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