How to Unfreeze a Bank Account

A bank account can be frozen for a variety of reasons. One of the least worrying is an account frozen because of inactivity. If your bank has placed a freeze on your account for this reason, all you need to do is verify your identity and your current contact information to remove the freeze. If the assets have been frozen as a result of a court order or judgment lien, you will need to remove that before you can get access to the money.

Ask the bank why there is a freeze on the account. Request all information, including the judgment or court order that was provided to freeze the account.

Contact the lawyer or creditor listed on the paperwork you received from the bank. Explain that you are trying to unfreeze an account, why it needs to be released and request a fax number.

Write a letter stating the reasons you need to have the funds released and fax it to the lawyer or creditor. If the account has a marginal balance, the funds may be released. If it has a higher balance, the freeze may not be lifted.

Gather all documentation you have that can help lift the freeze. Include copies of bank statements, voided checks paid to the creditor and supporting documentation that suggests there should be no freeze on the account.

Go to the courthouse where the judgment was obtained. Ask the clerk for a form called an "Order to Show Cause." Fill out the form, referencing the judgment provided to you by the bank. Attach a bank statement to the form and any supporting documentation you have compiled. Include a settlement negotiation if you indeed owe someone money. Offer a lesser amount or a monthly payment program.

Submit the Order to Show Cause and obtain a court date if you cannot be seen by the judge immediately.

Show up in court and obtain an order to either "completely release" or "conditionally release" the funds.

Take the court order to your bank showing the freeze should be lifted based on the conditions defined in the order.


In some instances, you may not be able to release a frozen account until you pay the creditor off completely.

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About the Author

With more than 15 years of professional writing experience, Kimberlee finds it fun to take technical mumbo-jumbo and make it fun! Her first career was in financial services and insurance.

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