Chayet & Danzo, LLC

Call for a Free Initial Consultation

Direct 303-872-5980
Toll-Free 888-472-1088
Email Us

COVID-19 NOTICE:

After careful review of the COVID-19 environment, the law firm of Chayet & Danzo, LLC, will be conducting in-person appointments in our offices on a limited basis and with strict social distancing protocols.

During this time, our team will continue to diligently work remotely on all client matters and will maintain communication through email, telephone, and video conferencing. Our main office number, (303) 355-8500 will continue to be answered during our normal business hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday – Thursday and 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Fridays.

This decision to have limited appointments in-office while following strict social distancing protocols is in the best interest and health of our team, clients and community.

We will continue accepting new clients during this period as well as fully servicing our existing clients.

We wish you and your family continued health during these unique and challenging times.

Compassion, talent and dedication:
guiding colorado families and Their Trusted Advisors During Times of Need

Designating beneficiaries of pay-on-death accounts in Colorado

Colorado enacted new legislative changes concerning distributions to beneficiaries of amounts on deposit in pay-on-death (POD) accounts at financial institutions. Upon the death of the sole or last account holder of a POD financial account , the new law permits the non-equal distribution of funds from accounts which have two or more beneficiaries.

Prior law required that accounts with POD designations naming two or more beneficiaries must be paid to the surviving beneficiaries in equal shares. The account owner could not legally designate different proportions to each beneficiary.

The new law provides that funds may be distributed to the beneficiaries in the proportions specified in the written designation kept on file in the records of the financial institution. If no proportions are specified, the funds are evenly divided between the beneficiaries.

What if a beneficiary predeceases the account owner?

If there are two or more beneficiaries, and a beneficiary predeceases the account owner, the designation goes back to equal distribution unless the POD designation is changed by the account owner to state otherwise. As under prior law, if none of the designated beneficiaries survive the account owner, sums remaining on deposit belong to the estate of the last surviving account owner.

Some pros and cons

POD accounts can be a useful alternative used in estate planning since they generally permit bank account assets to avoid probate. After the account holder’s death, such funds can be distributed to the beneficiaries designated by the account owner outside probate. Beneficiaries have no rights to the money during the account owner’s lifetime. Beneficiary designations on POD financial accounts also take precedence over conflicting provisions of a will.

One possible disadvantage to allowing non-equal distributions POD account designations is that it could give rise to disputes among the beneficiaries. Litigation could result to resolve claims regarding the intent of the account owner or the validity or the correct interpretation of the account owner’s distribution instructions.

Effective date

The new law was signed and took effect on March 29, 2013, and affects all accounts containing the POD designation, created before, or on, or after March 29, 2013.

Estate planning can be a complex process and state and federal laws affecting estate planning are subject to frequent changes. Individuals desiring assistance in these matters should consult with an experienced estate planning attorney who stays current in this field in order to ensure that it is done correctly.

Contact Our Firm

Co-Counsel Services for
settling of Personal Injury and Divorce Cases

Read More

Important intake forms

Prepare for your Meeting

Our Elder Law & Estate Planning Blog

Read Weekly Updates

Join our mailing list

Sign up here

Recent Blog Posts

What is a financial power of attorney?

There are many components in a comprehensive estate plan. While many people think about the will and trusts, the power of attorney designations should receive equal attention. As part of your estate plan, you need to establish a financial power of attorney...

How planning can help you enjoy your golden years at home

Multi-generational family homes do exist, but they are far less common than they were years ago. Most households contain only one or possibly two generations of family members, with children usually moving out as soon as they achieve financial independence. Although...

3 things to remember when selecting your medical power of attorney

When you’re selecting your health care proxy, which is also known as your medical power of attorney, it’s a good idea to make sure you select someone you trust and know will make good decisions on your behalf. There are many characteristics that make someone a good...

Not all wills are created equal

Creating a will is pointless if a court will not uphold it. Each state has different laws regarding  what they consider a valid will. What conditions must I meet for a will to hold up in Colorado? For your will to be valid in Colorado, you must comply with the...

What is involved in executing an estate?

One of the most important things to consider when creating an estate plan is who to name as your estate executor. It is a big responsibility with potentially minimal reward. You could choose a family member or friend. Alternatively, you could opt for someone who does...