Joint Account Rules and Regulations in India | DBS Bank (2024)

Understanding the Joint Account rules in India

Key Takeaways

  • Joint Accounts have more than one account holder.
  • Depending on the account mode, account holders can enjoy certain privileges.
  • Joint and Joint or Survivor Accounts need all account holders to mandate transactions.
  • For Former or Survivor and Latter or Survivor accounts, account operation gets passed to the other only if one of the account holders dies.
  • Since money can be withdrawn without any consent, you must only open Joint Accounts with people you trust.

A Joint Account is a Bank Account with more than one holder. Such an account can be a Savings Account, Current Account, Fixed Deposit, Loan Account, etc. For these accounts, questions like 'who is the owner', 'who can withdraw money', and 'can I remove other account holders' are legitimate. Our comprehensive guide on Joint Bank Account rules answers all such questions.

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Joint Account Rules in India

Joint Accounts are like Regular Bank Accounts, except they are operated by more than one account holder. Not every account holder of a Joint Account can deposit and withdraw money, transfer funds, make ATM withdrawals, issue cheques, etc.

Account Operation

You can open a Joint Account like you would open a regular bank account, i.e., fill out the account opening form and complete the Know Your Customer (KYC) process. Simply select the mode of holding as joint. Following are the Joint Bank Account Rules in India per the account mode.

  • Joint: All transactions in the account must be approved and signed by all the account holders. If any one of the account holders dies, the account will be deemed inoperable, and the bank will pass on the balance in the account to the survivor.
  • Joint or Survivor: This account is similar to the Joint one; however, the survivor can continue to operate the account.
  • Either or Survivor: This account has two account holders, a primary and secondary account holder, and either or both can operate the account.
  • Former or Survivor: Only the primary account holder can operate this account. Per Joint Bank Account rules on death, the other joint account holder can operate the account upon the demise of the primary account holder.
  • Latter or Survivor: The second account holder can operate the account. After their death, the primary account holder takes over the operations.
  • Anyone or survivor: This type of Joint Account is operated by more than two persons, and they do not require each holder to sign off on transactions.


Account holders must establish the purpose of the joint account to decide how the account will be funded. Depending on the account type, not all account holders can operate the account, which also means limitations on deposits.


In 'Either or Survivor' and 'Anyone or Survivor' accounts, joint holders have access to funds without consent from others, regardless of who funds the account.

Account Closing

Whether you are the primary account holder or not, you can choose to close the account at any time. However, in the case of 'Joint', all members must sign the account closing form.

Final Note

Joint Accounts come with numerous benefits, especially for spouses and business partners looking to manage their expenses jointly. However, there are certain Joint Account rules and regulations that all account holders must follow. You must open joint Accounts only with those whom you trust. All account holders must agree to the stipulated terms and conditions before opening a Joint Bank Account.

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*Disclaimer: This article is for information purposes only. We recommend you get in touch with your income tax advisor or CA for expert advice.

Joint Account Rules and Regulations in India | DBS Bank (2024)


What are the rules for joint bank accounts? ›

Following are the Joint Bank Account Rules in India per the account mode. Joint: All transactions in the account must be approved and signed by all the account holders. If any one of the account holders dies, the account will be deemed inoperable, and the bank will pass on the balance in the account to the survivor.

Can NRI hold joint saving account in India? ›

As a Non-Resident Indian (NRI), holding a joint account with a resident Indian can be a convenient way to secure the financial well-being of your family in India.

What are the limitations on joint bank accounts? ›

If the joint account earns interest, you may be held liable for the income produced on the account in proportion to your ownership share. Also any withdrawals exceeding $14,000 per year by a joint account holder (other than your spouse) may be treated as a gift by the IRS. This may subject you to gift tax.

Can one person withdraw money from joint account in India? ›

The money in joint accounts belongs to both owners. Either person can withdraw or spend the money at will — even if they weren't the one to deposit the funds. The bank makes no distinction between money deposited by one person or the other, making a joint account useful for handling shared expenses.

Can you still withdraw money from a joint account if one person dies? ›

Joint bank accounts

If one dies, all the money will go to the surviving partner without the need for probate or letters of administration. The bank may need the see the death certificate in order to transfer the money to the other joint owner.

Can a wife empty a joint bank account? ›

If the funds in your joint bank account are considered separate property and owned exclusively by your spouse, they may legally be able to drain the account. Similarly, even if the account is community property, a spouse may be able to withdraw money for reasonable living expenses, legal fees, and children's expenses.

Can NRI hold joint saving account? ›

A joint account can be held by an NRI with his/her resident close relative which can include parents, siblings, spouse, siblings' spouse, children, grandparents, and spouses of grandchildren. For such accounts, the resident Indian remains the primary holder and the NRI is considered the secondary account holder.

What are the new rules for NRI account in India? ›

Latest Income Tax Rules for NRIs
  • Income tax slabs for NRIs are based only on income. ...
  • All incomes of NRIs are charged irrespective of any threshold value for TDS.
  • Nominal deductions are not applicable on investment income, except under specific situations.

What are the requirements for joint account in India? ›

Documents required for joint bank account:
Proof of identityPassport, Driving licence, Voter's ID card, etc.
Proof of addressPassport, Driving licence, Voter's ID card, etc.
Other important documentsPAN card Form 16 (only if PAN card is not available) 2 latest passport size photographs

What are the dangers of a joint account? ›

A joint account might damage your credit score

Opening a joint account adds a financial link to the other person. This means companies will look at both of your credit histories as part of any credit checks. If they have a poor credit history, this might lower your chances of acceptance.

What is bad about joint account? ›

Lack of control. You cannot control how the other party spends your money. If your partner decides to spend frivolously, you will both feel the blow. This sort of problem can lead to many fights about what is necessary to spend on and what isn't.

What are the 2 types of joint accounts? ›

In the United States, there are typically two types of joint accounts: survivorship accounts and convenience accounts.

Does it matter who is primary on a joint account? ›

Primary account holders are legally responsible for the account. Primary account holders can name others as "authorized users" on the account, but they remain responsible for it. Joint account holders share responsibility for that account and both are considered primary account holders.

Who owns the money in a joint bank account when one dies? ›

Joint Bank Account Rules on Death

"The joint owner becomes the legal and equitable owner of all funds in a joint account at the instant of death," says Doehring. "It does not become part of the probate estate."

Do both parties have to be present to open a joint bank account? ›

Accounts can be opened in person at a branch office or online, depending on the bank you choose. If you plan to do it in person, both account holders will need to be present.

Do both parties need to be present to close a joint bank account? ›

Can one party with a joint bank account close the account? Generally, no. Banks require that both account holders consent to closing the account. It may be possible in some cases for one account holder to remove themselves from the account, though, without the explicit consent of both parties.


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