What Is a Joint Checking Account?

by Hillary Marshall ; Updated July 27, 2017
Joint checking offers both benefits and drawbacks for the account holders.

Joint checking is designed to allow two or more individuals to pool their money together in one account. The joint checking account is owned equally by all parties named on the account. Any of the co-owners of the account can use the account independently.

Benefits

Joint checking accounts offer convenience in many situations. Both family members and business associates commonly open joint accounts, enabling couples, roommates and business partners to share expenses with ease. Parents can set up a joint account with a child and have the bank restrict the child's access to the account.

Pitfalls

Joint checking accounts are not without problems. Primarily, the risk you take when opening a joint account is that the other party has equal access to the account and can empty the account if he so chooses. The account also is associated with the co-owner and is subject to liens or creditor action.

Considerations

According to Bankrate.com, joint checking accounts are subject to the rights of survivorship. If one of the co-owners of a joint account dies, the other party does not have to wait to access the money in the joint account.

About the Author

Hillary Marshall has been writing professionally since 2006. Before writing instructional articles online, she worked as a copywriter and has been published in "Ideal Living" "Sass" "Science Edge" and "Shopping Cents" magazines along with countless websites including Gadling a blog by the Huffington post. Marshall studied early childhood education at the Stratford Career Institute.

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