How to claim lost savings bonds
Bureau of Public Debt: Savings Bonds / Postal Savings System / Treasury Bonds, Bills & Notes
► Unredeemed U.S. Savings Bonds at Final Maturity
The value of unredeemed bonds which have reached final maturity and are no longer earning interest currently exceeds $17 billion. With added interest, an unredeemed bond may be worth more than five times the original face value.
Less than 1% of all bondholders – only owners of Series H and HH bonds - are notified when their bonds reach final maturity. All others, including holders of Series EE U.S. Savings Bonds and family members whose deceased relatives may have owned bonds, must take affirmative action to replace or redeem lost or matured securities. MORE
► Lost, Stolen or Destroyed Bonds
To replace lost, stolen or destroyed bonds you will need to submit Treasury Form PD F 1048. You will need to describe the missing bonds, including approximate issue date, face value, full name and social security number on the bond; as well as bond serial number and date the loss was discovered.
Circumstances of the loss must be explained, i.e. whether they were lost, stolen or destroyed. If stolen, a police report should be included. If destroyed, missing pieces, if any, should be attached. You are given
a choice of receiving substitute bonds or a cash payment. MORE
► Undelivered Savings Bonds
Each year, over 15,000 savings bonds and 25,000 bond interest payments are returned to the Department of the Treasury as undeliverable, either due to the expiration of a U.S. Postal Service forwarding order, or because an incorrect address was supplied. MORE
► Lost Bonds in a Safe Deposit Box
Many people store bonds and other securities in safe deposit boxes. The contents of safe deposit boxes with expired leases and no further rental payments eventually revert to government custody.
Be aware most states auction off the contents of escheated boxes after one to three years. Although the cash received may always be available for claim, items of personal significance may be lost forever. MORE
► Safekeeping Bonds
In 1935, the U.S. Treasury initiated a safekeeping program which allowed individual investors to store bonds in vaults at Federal Reserve banks. At the end of 1972, over 700,000 matured bonds worth $50 million were held. Almost half belonged to World War II and other veterans. Although safekeeping services are no longer offered to the general public, the Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force provide storage for up to one year after a member leaves service. MORESource: www.lostsavingsbonds.com