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Woman seeks leave to take NCB to Privy Council to get her deceased aunt's money

Published:Monday | July 27, 2015 | 7:21 AM

The Appeals Court will today hear an application from a woman seeking permission to go to the Privy Council to challenge a bank’s decision to block access to a joint account she held with a relative who has died. 

Earlier this year, the Appeals Court upheld a 2010 Supreme Court judgment that Clover Robinson was not entitled to the funds deposited by her aunt, Ruby Noel.  

Robinson, who was also her aunt's caregiver, wants the London-based Privy Council, to overturn the decision of the Jamaican courts which have affirmed the decision of the National Commercial Bank (NCB). 

A three-member panel, including Justice Patrick Brooks who heard the appeal this year, is to consider the application for leave to go the Privy Council. 

Robinson had complained that in 2010, the judge ought to have found that her right as the surviving account holder, should have been enforced.

The judge had found that Robinson did not counter arguments that her aunt's estate was not entitled to the funds, and the bank was wrong to have denied her access to the money.

In September 2007, just days before Noel died, Robinson's name was added to savings and fixed deposit accounts held at NCB's Santa Cruz branch.

The aunt had wanted to make it easier for her bills to be paid as her illness was worsening. 

Following the death, Robinson attempted to withdraw $3 million from the savings account to open another account in her name.

The Santa Cruz branch denied the request and on the same day, Robinson went to NCB's Black River branch and withdrew $500,000 from the savings account.

Two days later, Robinson went to the Mandeville branch to make another withdrawal, but by that time NCB had frozen the account and her request was denied. 

In October 2007, the executors of Noel's estate, laid claim to the funds and requested that nothing be paid out from them.

The matter has been before the courts since.