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Beneficiaries / POD / Toten Trust / Informal Trust
Written by Andrew Vebber
Updated over a week ago

How to Set Up or Maintain a Totten Trust Account A Totten trust, also known as a payable-on-death (POD) account, is a type of bank account that allows you to name beneficiaryies to inherit the account balance upon your death. Totten trusts are simple and inexpensive to set up, and they can be a great way to ensure that your assets are distributed to your loved ones according to your wishes. To set up a Totten trust account, simply contact us or visit a branch location and ask to open a new account. When you open the account, you will be asked to name a beneficiary (s). The beneficiary can be any person, including a spouse, child, friend, or other family member. Once the account is opened, you will be able to make deposits and withdrawals as usual. However, the beneficiary will not be able to access the account until after your death. If you already have a bank account, you can convert it to a Totten trust account by simply adding a beneficiary to the account. Benefits of Totten Trust Accounts There are several benefits to setting up a Totten trust account.

  • Easier to set up and maintain than a will. Totten trusts are much simpler to set up and maintain than a will. You do not need to hire an attorney, and there are no filing fees.

  • Assets pass to beneficiary immediately upon death. With a Totten trust, assets pass to the beneficiary immediately upon your death. This means that there is no need to go through the probate process, which can be time-consuming and expensive.

  • Can have multiple beneficiaries. You can name multiple beneficiaries for a Totten trust account. The account balance will be divided equally among the beneficiaries.

How to Open a Totten Trust Account To open a Totten trust account, you can contact us here or visit a branch location and ask to open a new account. When you open the account, you will be asked to provide the following information:

  • The name of the beneficiary

  • The beneficiary's Social Security number and date of birth

You wiill sign a signature card with a beneficiary designation section completed. How to Claim a Totten Trust Account If you are the beneficiary of a Totten trust account, you will need to provide the following information to the bank:

  • The deceased account holder's name

  • The account number

  • A copy of the deceased account holder's death certificate

The bank will then release the funds to you. Additional Information

  • Totten trusts are not available in all states.

  • Totten trusts do not provide any asset protection from creditors.

  • Totten trusts are not a substitute for a will. If you have significant assets, you should consider creating a will.

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