In the Matter of Charles Rider

The Supreme Court granted a petition for a writ of certiorari to review the decision of the Court of Appeals in "Rider v. Estate of Rider," (713 S.E.2d 643 (Ct. App. 2011)), which applied the common law of agency to hold that certain financial assets were part of the decedent's probate estate. The decedent had directed his bank to transfer specified assets in his investment account to a new account for his spouse, but died before all of the assets were credited to the account. The issue in this case was one of first impression for the Supreme Court, and after review of the facts, the Court reversed the appellate court: "[o]nce Husband issued the entitlement order and was the appropriate person, Wachovia was obligated by the UCC and the parties' Account Agreement to obey his directive. Wachovia had set up a new investment account in Wife's name and commenced the transfer of securities within a few days of Husband's request, so at that point, Wife already had a recognizable interest, even though Wachovia had not posted all of the securities to her account. The Court of Appeals, in focusing solely on the date of the 'book entry,' which it took to mean the date the securities were credited or posted to Wife's account, seemed to view this as the exclusive means for obtaining an interest in the securities." View "In the Matter of Charles Rider" on Justia Law