In The Name of My Father’s Estate (Episode 25)

While both the wives of Lee Sr, that is, Mrs Patricia Lee (1st wife) and Connie (2nd wife) claimed their legal rights to Lee Sr’s joint bank account in ZNA Bank, Singapore, which was opened under the names of Lee Sr and Mrs Patricia Lee, the manager of ZNA Bank scrambled to check with his legal department to establish who has the rights to claim the amount in the account which has a sum of S$3 million. This was due to the sudden presence of Mrs Patricia Lee in the bank to claim the amount and Connie’s legal letter from Malaysia to freeze the account pending Lee Sr’s application for Letter of Administration (L.A.) in Malaysia. Mrs Patricia Lee returned to ZNA bank after being promised by the bank manager the previous day to give her the answer whether the bank could release the money to her. When she met the bank manager, she was told that she could withdraw the entire sum of money in the joint bank account with her husband due to the ‘joint survivorship clause’. Upon hearing this, she jumped for joy. However, the manager said, “Mrs Lee, this does not mean that this is applicable in other banks if you and your husband have this type of account with other banks as their policies may vary.” To this, Mrs Patricia Lee said, “Don’t worry about that and thank you for the information.” She then asked the manager, “Can you release the money to my account in this bank now?” In response to this, the manager said, “Ok. My officers will process the release of the money to your account.”

Once she received the money, the bank informed Connie’s lawyer with their explanation on the bank’s legal stand on the ‘joint survivorship clause’ and also the fact that Connie’s proof of her marriage to Lee Sr with birth certificates of her three children was not sufficient. Upon hearing this news, Connie was furious and called John Lee (eldest son of Lee Sr). She said, “John, I have received news from ZNA bank, Singapore that your mother has withdrawn the entire amount of S$3 million from your father’s joint account with her. I thought you said in our earlier meeting that she was willing to distribute your father’s 50 per cent in that account according to Intestacy law. Did you know about this and what are you going to do about it?” John replied, “In the first place, I didn’t know about this and I am surprised you knew. Are you telling me that you have also tried withdrawing the money behind our backs even after our meeting the other day?” In response, Connie said, “No. What I did was to inform ZNA Bank to freeze the accounts pending our application for L.A. on my suspicion that your mother was going to withdraw it. Guess what? I was right. I want you now to remind your mother that if she wants our application for L.A. to be smooth, then she must consider seriously releasing the amount which my children and I are entitled to.” John then said, “Let me get back to you once I have spoken to her.” John then immediately contacted his mother and asked, “Mum, I just received a call from Connie saying that you have withdrawn the entire S$3 million from your joint account with father. Is this true?” In response, Mrs Patricia Lee said, “Yes. The bank said I am entitled to all of it due to their policy on the ‘joint survivorship clause’ but they have also told me that it may not be the same with other banks.” John then said, “We better meet up to talk about this because Connie will not give us an easy time as she wants her entitlement.”

To be continued…

Wishing all readers a very Happy and Prosperous New Year!

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