Marriage is one institution in which people (man and woman) of different background come together to share many things. They share the same apartment, same bed, some share same toothbrush and other personal belongings. Where couples are supposed to share everything by virtue of their union, some find it difficult to have same bank account.
Money, the Bible says ‘it’s the root of evil’; those who cannot have a joint account with their spouses seems to be scared with the evil attached with money. As there are merits of having a joint account, there are also demerits to it.
There was a viral video of a woman who was terribly sick and needed a huge amount for her treatment to continue. Despite the fact that she has money in a joint account with her husband, she couldn’t access the funds as she was only a signatory to the account on her husband’s wish. The woman was in coma with life support. Her bank insisted that she should be brought to the bank but she couldn’t make it. If you look at this and other issues, you wouldn’t want to have a joint account.
Because having joint account in marriage is one of the controversial issues in our society today, I therefore asked several people (both married and unmarried) on their take on this topic. This is what they have to say:
Joint account in marriage is good but what works for ‘A’ might not work for ‘B’.
Also, we need to understand that we are not perfect. Your spouse must have a weakness. If arbitrary spending is your spouse’s weakness, then you know that joint account is what will break the marriage because one day you’ll need money and realize your spent everything on shenanigans. That is when you will raise your hand on someone you’ve pampered like an egg.
So my advice is this, let couples study each other very well. Know your strength and weaknesses, know how you both handle money. If your spouse is great at money management, by all means have a joint account. If it is the other way, just put the amount of money that you can let go of in a joint account and not all your money. Wisdom is profitable to direct.Barrister (Mrs) Bukky
Having a joint account is a bad idea for me. Well, maybe because of my past experiences. My partner prefers to spend more on an account I pay more into the account even though she’s got a well paid job. Even with a separate account, she would want me to make the payment for everything even vacations.Mr. Tolulope
It depends on both partner understanding. To me, I won’t do such for any reason.Mrs. Esther
Having a joint account with your spouse is very good but it depends on your partner. If he/she is the type that will question you on every dime you spend for the family and other things, please don’t do it.Mr. Samson
A joint account is a kind of commitment for both parties (husband and wife) in marriage and also a bond too but at the same time, they also need a personal account.Olumide
I’m not in support of joint account even though I’m not married. I will never advice a friend or enemy to do it. This our generation value money over life. The question I do ask is what reason do you have to want a joint account. My partner can have 80% of my monthly income transferred to her account but big NO to joint account.Jamiu Norwitski
What’s the essence of joint account when there is trust. If there is trust between the couple, they can have access to each other’s individual account so there’s no need to have a joint account.Miss Gold
Well, I think it is okay to have a joint account if the couple have a common goal which made them to open the account in the first place.Happiness Fyneface
What then is a Joint account?
A joint account is a type of bank account that allows more than one person to own and manage it. It may be managed by spouses, business partners, siblings and so on. Everyone named on the account has equal access to funds, regardless of who deposited the money.
How does a joint account work?
With a joint bank account, two or more people are able to access the money in the account. Joint account holders can all pay into the account, pay bills, write cheques or withdraw cash (although sometimes more than one person needs to agree this). There’s always a signatory to the account which maybe the ‘both to sign’ option or the ‘either to sign’ option.
Why do couples have to own a joint account?
For you to be in a relationship and as well go on to marry your partner, you must have trusted each other. You must have trust on each other in all aspects including money. Couples who therefore share a common goal need to have a joint account. How to handle money is one of the main conversations to have as a couple.
When you have a joint account in marriage, it is very easy for spouses to access the money in the account at any time to make payments. You don’t need written permission from your spouse to access the account. This is very helpful when one spouse is unreachable. This can also make your financial lives simpler, as you do not have to track multiple accounts.
It is also been found to help couples to keep track of their joint monthly spending, budgeting for regular costs and saving for the future such as vacations, ceremonies and other financial commitments.
Also in the case of the death of one of them, the other person can continue the running the account, instead of waiting for letter of administration and it becomes easier if it’s ‘one to sign’. However, the success of the joint account depends on trust, openness and faithfulness.
Why you don’t need a joint account.
If you know your partner cannot manage money, it is better not to go for a joint account. Knowing yourselves very well is key in this regard. If you can’t decide well on who to be signatory to the account then, joint account is not for you. Fidelity is also key in having a joint account.
It is not advisable to have a joint account with a man that womanizes, this would lead to spending on girlfriends and thereby leading to break up in the marriage as the case maybe. One of the demerits of a joint account is that you might not always know what is in the account. Since both spouses have unrestricted access to the account, you could end up overdrawn if your spouse makes purchase and fails to inform you.
Another issue is that, if things turn bad in your relationship, each spouse has the ability to clean out the account and take all the money even if it is deposited by the other spouse. This kind of account can also prevent each individual from building up his or her own credit.
With all said, you have to know your partner very well if you have to have a joint account or not. You have to be on the same page to avoid stories that touches the heart. Experts said that if couples cannot agree on money, they will hardly agree on anything because money has to be spent everyday. You just have to find what soothes your lives best and work with it.
Let’s have your views and opinions on this topic in the comment section. Thanks for taking your time to read this piece.