Florida Senate - 2018 SB 892 By Senator Garcia 36-00988A-18 2018892__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to financial institution payments to 3 surviving successors; creating s. 655.795, F.S.; 4 authorizing a financial institution to pay to the 5 surviving successor of a decedent depositor, without 6 any court proceedings, order, or judgment authorizing 7 the payment, the funds in the decedent’s deposit 8 accounts and certificates of deposit if the sum does 9 not exceed a specified amount; providing that the 10 financial institution has no duty to make certain 11 determinations; defining the term “surviving 12 successor”; requiring the surviving successor to 13 provide a certified copy of the decedent’s death 14 certificate and a specified affidavit to the financial 15 institution; providing construction relating to 16 liability and indemnification; providing an affidavit 17 form that the surviving successor may use; providing 18 construction relating to any conflict with the Florida 19 Probate Code; providing an effective date. 20 21 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 22 23 Section 1. Section 655.795, Florida Statutes, is created to 24 read: 25 655.795 Payment to successor without court proceedings.— 26 (1)(a) A financial institution in this state may pay to a 27 surviving successor of a decedent, without any court 28 proceedings, order, or judgment authorizing the payment, the 29 funds on deposit in all deposit accounts and certificates of 30 deposit if the total amount standing to the credit of the 31 decedent in the financial institution does not exceed $10,000. 32 The financial institution has no duty to determine whether the 33 funds belong to the separate estate of the decedent or to the 34 community that existed between the decedent and any surviving 35 spouse. 36 (b) For purposes of this section, the term “surviving 37 successor” means: 38 1. The surviving spouse of the decedent; 39 2. If the decedent did not leave a surviving spouse, any 40 adult child of the decedent; or 41 3. If the decedent did not leave a surviving spouse or any 42 adult children, the mother or father of the decedent. 43 (c) The surviving successor shall provide the financial 44 institution a certified copy of the decedent’s death certificate 45 and an affidavit that includes all of the following: 46 1. A statement attesting that the surviving successor is 47 the surviving spouse, adult child, or parent of the decedent. In 48 the case of an adult child, the affidavit must attest that the 49 decedent left no surviving spouse. In the case of a parent, the 50 affidavit must attest that the decedent left no surviving spouse 51 or adult children. 52 2. The date of death and the address of the last residence 53 of the decedent. 54 3. A statement attesting that the total amount on deposit 55 with the financial institution does not exceed $10,000. 56 4. A statement acknowledging that the payment of the funds 57 constitutes a full release and discharge of the financial 58 institution for the amount paid and that the surviving successor 59 indemnifies the financial institution against claims; demands; 60 expenses, including attorney fees and court costs; losses; or 61 damages incurred by the financial institution for taking any 62 action, or failing to take an action, in connection with the 63 disbursement of the funds. 64 (d) The payment of funds by the financial institution to 65 the surviving successor constitutes a full release and discharge 66 of the financial institution for the amount paid. A person, 67 natural or juridical, does not have any right or cause of action 68 against a financial institution because of the payment, and the 69 surviving successor shall indemnify and hold harmless the 70 financial institution against claims; demands; expenses, 71 including attorney fees and court costs; losses; or damages 72 incurred by the financial institution for taking any action, or 73 failing to take an action, in connection with the affidavit and 74 the disbursement of the funds. 75 (e) The surviving successor is answerable to any person 76 prejudiced by an improper distribution, including any personal 77 representative or other fiduciary acting on behalf of the 78 decedent or the estate of the decedent, or any beneficiary of 79 the decedent. 80 (2) The surviving successor may use the following affidavit 81 form to fulfill the requirements of paragraph (1)(c): 82 83 AFFIDAVIT UNDER SECTION 655.795, FLORIDA STATUTES, TO OBTAIN 84 BANK PROPERTY OF DECEASED ACCOUNTHOLDER: ...(Name of 85 deceased)... 86 State of .... 87 County of .... 88 89 I, ...(affiant’s printed full name)... of ...(affiant’s 90 residential address)..., being first duly sworn, on oath deposes 91 and states (initial one response): 92 93 1. .... I am the surviving spouse of the deceased. 94 .... I am a surviving adult child of the deceased, and the 95 deceased left no surviving spouse. 96 .... I am a surviving parent of the deceased, and the deceased 97 left no surviving spouse or adult children. 98 2. As shown in the certified death certificate, the date of 99 death was ..... 100 3. The last address of the deceased was ..... 101 4. I certify that I am entitled to payment of the 102 deceased’s deposit accounts (the “Funds”) held by the following 103 financial institution: ...(the “Financial Institution”)..., 104 which amount does not cumulatively exceed $10,000. I hereby 105 request full payment from the Financial Institution. 106 5. The payment of the Funds constitutes a full release and 107 discharge of the Financial Institution for the amount paid. 108 6. I, individually and as the affiant, agree to indemnify 109 the Financial Institution and hold it free and harmless from any 110 and all claims; demands; expenses, including attorney fees and 111 court costs; losses; or damages incurred by the Financial 112 Institution for any action taken, or failure to take an action, 113 in connection with this Affidavit and disbursing the Funds to me 114 or as instructed by me. 115 By ...(signature of affiant)... 116 117 Sworn to and subscribed before me this .... day of 118 .... by ...(name of affiant)..., who is personally 119 known to me or produced .... as identification, and 120 did take an oath. 121 122 ...(name of notary public)... 123 Notary Public 124 My Commission Expires: 125 ...(date of expiration of commission)... 126 127 (3) In the event of a conflict between this section and the 128 Florida Probate Code, this section supersedes the conflicting 129 provision of the Florida Probate Code. 130 Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2018.