February 18 2021
TOKYO – The Japanese Bankers Association, or Zenginkyo, said Thursday that it will ask member commercial banks to flexibly respond to third-party requests for withdrawals of dementia sufferers’ deposits.
Such deposits withdrawals by relatives and others should be allowed if the money proves to be used for the sake of the patients, such as to pay their medical and living expenses, the leading banking industry group said.
Zenginkyo issued the statement at a time when financial institutions in the country are facing the pressing problem of how to treat deposits and other financial assets held by dementia sufferers, which are estimated to reach 215 trillion yen in 2030.
Currently, banks allow withdrawals from deposit accounts held by people whose cognitive functions are deteriorating only when the transactions are carried out under the adult guardianship system.
If banks accept withdrawal requests without clear consent from the account holders, they may be sued by those who claim illegitimacy of the withdrawals, people familiar with the matter said.