There are several different types of account ownership for personal accounts. The most common are Sole Owner (one person) and Co-Owners (two or more people), the most common of which is Joint Owners with Right of Survivorship. Accounts can also be set up as Payable on Death to a Beneficiary, one who has no ownership rights until death of the owner. A Power of Attorney for an account owner has no ownership rights, but has the right to sign for the owner. There are other legal signature authorities for accounts, such as Agent, Guardian, Custodian, Conservator and Executor.
Ownership types are governed by Uniform Commercial Code and by state law. The type of ownership not only affects who has access to the account, but may also affect how much FDIC insurance coverage each customer has.
Consult your financial institution for options when establishing new accounts or reviewing existing accounts. You may also need to consult your attorney, especially when updating your will or doing other financial planning to see if your accounts have the correct account ownership for your needs.