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SIVAK ESTATE. (11/26/62)

November 26, 1962

IN RE SIVAK ESTATE.


Appeal, No. 185, March T., 1962, from decree of Orphans' Court of Cambria County, File No. 36930, in the matter of estate of Mike Sivak, also known as Sewak, deceased. Decree affirmed.

COUNSEL

Samuel R. DiFrancesco, with him DiFrancesco & DiFrancesco, for appellant.

Reginald L. Pawlowski, for appellee.

Before Bell, C.j., Musmanno, Jones, Cohen, Eagen, O'brien and Keim, JJ.

Author: Bell

[ 409 Pa. Page 262]

OPINION BY MR. CHIEF JUSTICE BELL

Mike Sewalk*fn* died April 28, 1961, leaving a will dated February 18, 1960, in which he gave all of his estate to his six named children.*fn** Not including his Optional Savings Share Account in the Slovenian Savings and Loan Association, which amounted to $3,598, Mike Sewalk's estate consisted solely of real estate valued at $8,100.

Claimant, Chester Sewalk, one of testator's sons, appeals from a decree of the Orphans' Court which awarded the aforesaid "Optional Savings Share Account" to the executor of Mike Sewalk. The Orphans' Court held that claimant had failed to prove a gift inter vivos or a gift mortis causa to him.

This savings share account was taken out by the decedent on September 19, 1956. The pass book reads as follows: (Back of front cover, the following:) "SLOVENIAN SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION, CONEMAUGH, PA. Certificate No. 4452 OPTIONAL SAVINGS SHARE ACCOUNT This certifies that Mike Sewalk or ... is a member of Slovenian Savings and Loan Association and holds an Optional Savings Share Account of said Association, subject to its Charter and By-Laws and to the laws of the State of Pennsylvania. WITNESS the authorized signature of officer or employee this 19th

[ 409 Pa. Page 263]

    day of Sept. 1956. SLOVENIAN SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION ... Authorized Signature"

A signature card was signed by Mike Sewalk when he made the original deposit on September 19, 1956. The signature card contained on the back a printed statement that he opened a joint deposit account and the usual language with respect to "a joint account with right of survivorship." This language was unquestionably inappropriate for and undoubtedly inapplicable to the aforesaid account which Mike Sewalk opened.

Thereafter (on an unascertained date) in October, 1959, Mike Sewalk went to the bank and saw Anton Gabrenya, the president of the bank, and told him to add on the account the name of Chester Sewalk, the claimant. An employee of the bank thereafter entered the name of Chester Sewalk to the pass book so that it read "Mike Sewalk or Chester Sewalk", the address remaining still that of Mike Sewalk. An employee of the bank likewise stamped on the pass book in the upper right ...


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