How to cash a savings bond in someone else’s name?

Every savings bond is issued by the Department of Treasure, for that reason, they are considered one of the safest investments because the credit of the U.S. government backs them; this service also helps them with borrowing needs.

This department is the only one authorized to sell saving bonds, and they do it through banks and credit unions. In other words, you can be sure that you will receive the money when you cash your bond.

If you have one, you cannot sell it or give it away because since your name is written in the bond, generally, you are the only authorized person to cash it. However, in this article, we will show you some exceptions to this rule.

Cashing a savings bond

Commonly, if you want to cash a savings bond, the bank representatives will ask you for identification documents; this may include U.S passport, employee ID, state ID card, trade license, green card, and even your driver’s license.

But if you think that a savings bond is the only thing that can be cashed in someone else’s name, then you should know that personal checks are also possible. For example, you can go to the bank and cash your spouse’s personal check, but you need the endorsement first. On top of knowing this, it is important to know where can I cash a personal check.

On the other hand, there are some exemptions to the savings bond situation.

Sometimes a different person can cash these types of bonds on behalf of someone else, but the bank representatives will ask for a document of authorization; the type document will depend on the role or relationship with the owner.

Here are some specific situations and its requirements:

Parents or guardians

As we know, children underage are legally incapable of signing any documents. So, if they own a savings bond, the parents or guardian can cash it.

If this is your case you will have to present:

  • The birth certificate.
  • The guardian’s authority certificate.
  • Your identification document (in most cases, it is the driver’s license).
  • FS Form 1522. The U.S Department of Treasure issues this form for cashing bonds procedures. In it, you will have to provide information about yourself, your savings bonds identification, your bank account, the office where you are going to cash it, and your signature.

In some cases, if the certifying officer considers that the child is capable of understands this type of transaction, he or she can sign the form.

Here is the link where you can find the form: www.treasurydirect.gov/forms/sav1522.pdf.

FS Form 1522

By the time you sign, you have to endorse the bond and certify your authorization. For example, you can write something like, “I certify that I am the guardian of Thomas Miller, age 5, who is unable to sign and make this request legally. Sarah Brown, on behalf of Thomas Miller.”

Beneficiary

If a person owns a savings bond and suddenly dies, another person can cash it, but only if it was previously authorized.

However, in this link, you will find different situations and options to cash the bond of a deceased person: https://treasurydirect.gov/indiv/research/indepth/ebonds/res_e_bonds_eedeath.htm.

Another authorized person

This happens when people authorize someone else to redeem their savings bonds, who is not necessarily a family member.

In this case, you will need to show:

  • Your identification document.
  • The legal document that contains the authorization.
  • Again, FS Form 1522.

Power of Attorney

You can cash someone else’s bonds if that person authorizes you with a power issued by an attorney; note that you can whether cash one bond or various.

In this specific circumstance, before you go to the financial institution, the attorney must certify his o her signature by presenting the bond to an authorized officer of a bank, credit union, or a trust company.

Otherwise, the power document may be disesteemed since the attorney’s sign has not been certified.

Like the previous cases, you need to provide these documents to the bank representatives:

  • Your identification document.
  • A power of attorney.
  • The FS Form 1522.

➡ LEARN ALSO: How to get a power of attorney.

Stolen or lost savings bonds

If you lost a bond or if it was stolen, and you are wondering if anyone you do not know can cash it for you, you should not be worried.

As we mentioned during the article, you can be sure that no one can cash your bonds if you did not previously authorize them.

If you need to replace your lost bond, you will have to fill FS Form 1048, and present it to an office of the U.S Department of Treasure; you can download the form in this link: www.treasurydirect.gov/forms/sav1048.pdf.

FS Form 1048

It is also important to mention that, since January 1st, 2012, bonds are only issued electronically, so you will need to create an account on the official website of the department. Here is the link to do it: www.treasurydirect.gov/RS/UN-AccountCreate.do.

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38 thoughts on How to cash a savings bond in someone else’s name?

  1. I purchased bonds in my daughters name, payable to myself upon death. Can I cash these bonds now. My daughter is still alive

    Reply
    • No, you can only get them once your daughter passes away. In the section “Beneficiary” you will find the requirements you will need in that moment.

      Reply
  2. Hi,

    While living in California an old friend who I no longer have contact with purchased a $500 series EE bond for my daughter when she was born. I just came across it now and it seems he purchased it in his name. What should we do to get I cashed? I no longer have contact with him and we live outside the US now. Is it possible it was also registered in either my or my daughters name but not listed on the bond itself?

    Reply
  3. my wife died 7 years ago this November 2020. I found 2 savings bond in her name only and 1 bond with my name on it. I assume that I can cash the bond with my name on it also, but how would I go about cashing the other 2 bonds with her name only

    Reply
    • Hi Candis! If two people are named on the bond and one of them dies, the surviving person becomes the owner as if the survivor had been the only owner from the time the bond was issued. So, if his exwife is the only other person named on the bond, you cannot cash it. However, if you have an authorization letter or a will that allows you to obtain his savings, you should contact a lawyer to ask about that procedure.

      Reply
  4. My mother just found several EE savings bonds. they are in my deceased fathers name and her name. she is crippled up with arthritis and afraid of the coviad-virus and will not leave her home. my name is on 2 of her banking accounts and her bank refuses to cash the bonds without her there. is there any other way to cash these bonds for her?

    Reply
    • Hi, Catherine! You can cash someone else’s bonds if that person authorizes you with a power issued by an attorney; you need to provide these documents to the bank representatives: Your identification document, a power of attorney, and the FS Form 1522.

      We recommend you to talk directly to an attorney and ask him/her about this document.

      Reply
  5. I purchased bonds and had them set up pod and co owner equally between my 2 sons. My youngest son passed away. Do I need to change them to my surving son or just leave them to him in my will without putting his name on them?

    Reply
  6. I am the executor and administrator of my deceased parents. Through the gov abandoned property found monies I was sent the contents of the safe deposit box. There are several bonds in the box in others names and my my parents as “mail to” designations. As the administrator and executor compounded by me finding them as a bonded, can I liquidate and cash them?

    Reply
    • Hi, Michael. Yes. If those bonds were for your parents, and you have written authorization or a document that proofs your role as executor and administrator of your parents, you should be able to cash them.

      Reply
  7. My father has power of attorney for my mother. She is blind, has dementia, and is bedridden. The only way he could cash her old savings bonds was to send them to the treasury with power of attorney included. They cashed them and deposited the money. A month later they sent him a letter that he will have to pay all the money back if he doesn’t get doctor’s forms filled out. The doctor is taking too long for my dad’s satisfaction. What is this all about?

    Reply
    • Hi Clare. Probably the request for the doctor’s signature is because your mother’s illnesses are severe. I think the only thing you can do is insist on the doctor to sign them or ask if another doctor can do the evaluation and sign it.

      Reply
  8. People gave my children savings bonds as gifts but put my name and social security numbers on these bonds. The bonds now have matured. I gave them to my children so how do they cash the bonds in using their social security numbers, so they pay the taxes not me?

    Reply
    • Hi John! To do this, you must transfer the ownership of the bonds to them. In this case, you will have to send the bonds to the Treasury Department for reissue in the name of your children.

      To request a reissue, download and complete the Treasury Form 4000, fill it, print it, and take it (along with the savings bonds) to your bank to have the required signatures certified by a bank official. Once you have everything, submit the documents to the addresses listed at the bottom of the Form 4000 directions page.

      However, before you do that, I recommend you to read this: https://budgeting.thenest.com/transfer-series-ee-bond-new-owner-33991.html

      Reply
  9. I have a savings bond that I received in 1984 that is
    “Payable on Death”. I have had no contact with the issuer for over 20 years and therefore have no idea of his living status.
    Can I cash this?

    Reply
    • Hi, Julie! If you are listed as a beneficiary of that bond, you can redeem it by taking it to a bank or other financial institution that pays savings bonds (you will need to provide personal identification), however, if you are not sure if the issuer passed away, I recommend you to call the bank first; they may have that information if you are the beneficiary.

      Reply
  10. I have a savings bond bought for My granddaughter , she is still living , Owing me money & not speaking to me .My question is can I cash it ,its addressed to her but to be mailed to my house ?

    Reply
  11. I just ran across a saving bond that was purchased for my daughter as a gift when she was born. My child is transgender and is now my son witha legal name and gender change. His SS number however has never changed. How does he cash this bond?

    Reply
    • Hi, Susan! In this case is necessary to reissue the bond. First, remember to only cash bonds that you have held for the minimum retention period; if he changed his name after that time, he can do the rest.

      To request a reissue, download and complete the Treasury Form 4000, fill it (including SSN, mailing address, and especially that the reason for the reissue is a name change, that he should mention also) print it, and take it (along with the savings bonds) to the bank so he can have the required signatures certified by a bank official. Once he has everything, he can submit the documents to the addresses listed at the bottom of the Form 4000 directions page.

      When he finishes that, he will be able to go to the bank and cash the bond; but always remember that he must provide a valid and official identification that includes his physical description and new name.

      Reply
  12. My daughter was given four savings bonds when she was little for college. She is now ready to cash them as she is 18. All four are in her name but two of them are in her Social Security number and two are in the Social Security number of the person who bought them. Can she cash them?

    Reply
    • Hi, Cindy! As it is said on the Treasury Direct website: ‘The Social Security Number does not establish ownership or tax liability. It’s used to find savings bond records if, for example, the bonds are lost and the owner has not kept a record of serial numbers.’ So she should be able to cash them. However, you can confirm that information through:
      – email: https://www.treasurydirect.gov/WF/WebFeedback?site=td01&subject=eeori
      – call: 844-284-2676 (toll free)

      Reply
  13. I purchased I Bonds Under my name an SS number, with my brother named also. (or) 5 of my Bonds are missing. Is there a way to see who cashed them an the amount that they received?

    Reply
  14. My son has several savings bonds that need to be cashed. He is 20 and I have guardianship. most of them have his soc security # on them other than just a few that the purchaser used theirs not knowing his. I assume as guardian I can sign the back of them? the bank has the guardian papers on file. Is there anything else that I need to write on back or take with or just sign and put current address? i wasnt sure if had to note something on each one regarding guardianship or put my soc secuiry # anywhere?

    thanks for you help

    Reply
  15. My mother has passed and she has a bond for her sister than can not be located. Before my mother passed she told me to keep the bond and use it if needed. How do I go about cashing it? Its 26yrs old.

    Reply
    • Hi, Lamar! You can only cash a bond if 1) your name is in the bond 2) if you are previously authorized or 3) if you have a Power of Attorney letting you cash it.

      Reply
  16. 2 questions …

    My last name has changed but my SSN is still the same … do I have to go through the reissuing process or can I just show my name change legal papers at bank?

    Second, if an EE Paper Bond has a guarantor listed … can that person cash the check too if needed? What is the purpose/function of guarantors’ name listed under my name?

    Reply
  17. Hello
    My grandma passed away. So while cleaning out her house we found savings bonds in her name and my grandmother name. We have the death certificate for both of them. What should we do about the bonds

    Reply
  18. I legally purchased a storage unit giving me full ownership of contents! I came across 2) 200.00 series EE bonds in previous owners name! Since the contents ARE legally mine! Can/how do i cash said bonds!
    Much THANX!

    Reply
    • Hi, Richard! Although what you say is true, that you own the storage unit now, when it comes to savings bonds only people authorized or written in the bond can cash it. In this case, I recommend you to ask a lawyer since it is an exceptional case.

      Reply
  19. A friend of mine traded a $500 EE savings bond in his name for $500 cash bc he needed money immediately. What would we need to do to cash it for myself.

    Reply
    • I’m sorry, I don’t understand the question. If the bond is in your name and you want someone else to cash it for you, you must authorize the person first. In this case, they will need to show: an identification document, the legal document that contains the authorization, and FS Form 1522. If you want more safety, you can use a Power of Attorney.

      Reply

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