Cert. grant – Feb. 6, 2014 – Ravenstein v. Community Trust Bank

The Miss. S.Ct. granted cert in Ravenstein v. Community Bank concerning the obligations of a bank with repect to the transfer provisions of certificates of deposit. Tammy Ravenstrien and her husband were joint owners of 4 CDs worth $350,000 total. Ronnie transferred them to himself as sole owner and then pledged them for security on a loan to buy a car dealership in North Carolina.  In 2007  he defaulted on the loan and the bank took possession of the CDs.  In 2010, Tammy, now divorced from Ronnie, sued the bank.  Although the terms of the contract allowed funds to be withdrawn with only one person’s signature, Tammy  argued that the bank  failed to require Ronnie to present the certificates when he made the transfer as required by the agreement.  The trial court granted summary judgment to the bank and the Ct. of Appeals affirmed finding that the provision requiring presentation of the certificates  was to protect the bank’s right to restrict early withdrawals. So the bank could have refused the transfer to Ronnie when he failed to present the certificates but it breached no obligation to Tammy when it failed to do so.  Justice Irving was the lone dissent arguing that while the presentation requirement might be primarily for the bank’s benefit, it also protected the depositor.  To grant: Lamar, Kitchens, Pierce, King and Coleman, JJ. To Deny: Waller, C.J., Dickinson and Randolph, P.JJ., and Chandler,

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