How is a joint account different than just having a beneficiary?
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Two customers with a joint account have dual ownership of the assets in the account. Each owner can transfer money, create goals, change allocations, and more. Upon the death of one of the joint account owners, the assets are transferred to the surviving account owner.
On the other hand, a beneficiary does not have access, control, or ownership over the account while the account owner is alive. Upon the death of both of the joint account holders, the assets are transferred to the beneficiary.