Cashing a Deceased Parent's Savings Bonds?

June 7, 2018

Is there a phone number for a person I could talk to about the procedure for cashing in my mother's savings bonds? I am the executor of her estate.



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June 8, 20182 found this helpful
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Cashing someone else's savings bonds can be a tricky situation so going to your bank for guidance should be your first step.

  • You say you are the executor of your mother's estate but has the will been through probate?
  • Many times this has to happen before it can be said that you have a legal right to handle her financial affairs.
  • Did your mother have a bank account that you have been given access to? If so, then that is the bank you should visit first.
  • Have you successfully completed other financial transactions that were in your mother's name? If so, you may be able to cite these when you present the bonds to the bank.
  • If the bank accepts your mother's will designating you as executor then they should be able to handle the procedure for cashing the bonds.
  • If there are other family members who feel they have some rights to your mother's estate, then, most likely, you will have to file the will and go through probate before you can officially complete this type of transaction.
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  • An executor has certain rules to follow and if other family members are involved then I feel sure they will want an accounting for everything that is done (financially especially).
  • Talk to your bank executive and they will tell you what has to be done.
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3 More Questions

Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

February 13, 2017

My father had savings bonds; he passed away. Everything went to my mom, but we did not change the savings bonds into her name. My mom passed away and I am the executor of the will. How do I get the savings bonds cashed?


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February 14, 20170 found this helpful
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Generally savings bonds have a beneficiary named but it is not mandatory and a deceased bonds would then go to their estate. Did your father also have a will and was your mother the sole heir of his estate? Do you plan to put the money from the bonds into your mother's estate? Are there other family members who may contest your right to these bonds?


Legal matters like this can be daunting but a good bank officer should be able to help you with this matter. You will need to take the bonds, death certificates, any legal papers you have pertaining to your mother and any wills that found. You can go to your parent's bank or to any bank, as this is a pretty common matter to them.
The bank officer can usually advise you of your legal rights, but, in any case, they will probably have the forms you need and someone to certify them for you.

The Treasury Dept. site may be a little daunting but I have another site that may be easier to read:

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November 7, 2019

If my grandmother purchased bonds and they are in her name and my nephew and nieces names, but then my grandmother passes away and has left them in my possession. I am the executor of her estate, etc. Am I able to cash those bonds?


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November 7, 20190 found this helpful

From what I understand, the person whose name is on the bond cashes it.


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November 7, 20190 found this helpful

In my experience they can only be cashed by the owner. If she had another person's name on them, he/she is now the owner, based on her passing.


The bank can verify if this is still the protocol. He/she may need a death certificate so be sure to order enough of them.


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November 8, 20190 found this helpful

An executor usually takes care of items that are in the deceased's name and legally belonged to the deceased.
Some executor's duties and responsibilities may differ in different states so you should have something from your state explaining what you can and cannot do. This information should be obtainable from your courthouse.
The attorney that set up the will and executor's name for your grandmother should also be able to help you understand what you can and cannot do. Probably, the most important thing is to keep very accurate records of everything you do with your grandmother's money and possessions as this can be called in by the state at anytime and especially if a family member questions what is being done by the executor.


There may be some compensation granted to the executor (usually stated in the will or by the state) for carrying out the duties/responsibilities but you should know what amount of money is granted and should not spend over that amount for personal use.
An executor's main duties are usually to carry out the terms set forth in the deceased's will and to use any monies available to pay her legal obligations (such as funeral expenses, credit card debt, etc.).

As for the bonds your grandmother purchased and there is no mention of their distribution in her will (like 50% goes to a niece and so forth) it will be necessary for everyone named to be present (or their legal representative) for a bank to cash these bonds. Since you are the legal representative for your deceased grandmother you would need to be present and the money should be equally divided between all named on bonds. Your grandmother's share would be placed in her estate and legally handled by the executor for paying her past/present obligations.


Since these are government bonds you can discuss the payment with a postmaster but I believe they will direct you to a bank for payment. The bank takes care of making sure the money is going to named persons (they will probably need 2 forms of identification) and forwards 'paid' bonds to the appropriate government agency.
You can always talk to someone with the post office and also to an officer within your grandmother's bank.

Being an executor is a legal responsibility and is usually overseen by the court so be sure to check out exactly what this position legally entails so you will know when you might be overstepping the legal boundaries.
Be sure you have a legal representative that you can consult anytime you have questions.


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November 8, 20190 found this helpful

The bonds should be cashed by the person or persons whose name is on them.This should not be done if your name is not on the bonds. The nephew and nieces could file suite!


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November 8, 20190 found this helpful

I agree but as it happens the grandmother's name is also on the bonds and the executor is the legal representative of her estate and in that instance she would be acting the same as if the grandmother was present.
I believe the bank will divide the proceeds equally among the nieces and nephews and the executor of the estate who is representing the deceased grandmother.
I worked in USPS management for over 26 years and had many dealings with postal services and government bonds was one of those areas.
I have never dealt with a case exactly like this but I handled cases where an executor was present and represented the deceased.

Now it is possible that I could have a misunderstanding of this complete scenario and nothing I have said could be correct.
I just hope all concerned will have a friendly get together and make a trip to the bank to find out exactly what will happen.
That will be the answer to this question.

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September 24, 2017

Where do I call to order the FS form 5336 needed to cash the savings bonds owned by a deceased person?


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September 24, 20170 found this helpful

There is no need to call and go pick up this form. It is available online in a PDF file and you can download it from the Treasury office. Here is the link to the form.


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September 24, 20170 found this helpful

Use this form:

Or call this number for help:



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September 25, 20170 found this helpful

Here is the link to the forms can download them.


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September 26, 20170 found this helpful

The best way to redeem savings bonds is at your bank/financial institution.

  • The bank will cash them for anyone who is a legal person authorized to cash them.
  • If this is a deceased person, are you the one who has legal rights to the bonds?
  • Sometimes this can be complicated and the bank can answer all questions about cashing the bonds.
  • If they are not able to cash the bonds then you will most likely have trouble trying to complete and file Form 5336.
  • This form, under the circumstances you state, may take several days or weeks if something has to be verified as to who is the legal recipient.

Here are a couple of links that give very good instructions on how to cash these bonds as well as dealing with who may be a legal recipient.

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