How to Endorse Stock Certificates

by Karen Rogers

    Depositing paper stock certificates with your broker ensures their safety against theft or loss. It also provides a permanent electronic record verifying that you own a specific number of shares in the company. Depositing the stock certificates in your account makes it easy for you to sell or transfer them in the future.

    Step 1

    Retrieve the stock certificates from your safe deposit box or other secure location. Check with your broker to see if the firm requires a Medallion Stamp Guarantee before the stock certificates will be transferred into your account. Ask if other requirements must be met for the firm to accept the certificates.

    Step 2

    Many brokerage firms require paper stock certificates to bear the Medallion stamp before they will accept them. If that's the case with your broker, contact your bank, savings and loan, local brokerage firm branch or credit union where you have an account and ask if they participate in the Medallion program. The Medallion stamp verifies the identity of the person signing the stock certificate. If your financial institution provides this service, make an appointment to bring in the stock certificates and ask what personal identification you need to provide.

    Step 3

    Take your stock certificates to your financial institution. Sign your name on the back of the stock certificates exactly as it is appears on the front. Enter the name of your brokerage firm in the “Assign to” field, which ensures that only your broker can negotiate the certificates. The financial representative will then affix the Medallion stamp or imprint guaranteeing the validity of your signature.

    Step 4

    Make a copy of the front and back of the stock certificate. Contact your broker to verify where you need to mail or ship the stock certificate. Mail the certificate using a traceable service such as UPS, FedEx or the U.S. Postal Service's certified mail, return receipt requested. Keep your proof of mailing in a safe place.

    Items you will need

    • Stock certificates

    Tip

    • Stock certificates, along with house deeds and certificates of deposit, are proof of asset ownership. Always keep your financial papers in a safe deposit box or other secure place.

    Warning

    • You must have an account with the financial institution that participates in the Medallion Stamp Program before it will guarantee your signature.

    Photo Credits

    • Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Based in St. Petersburg, Fla., Karen Rogers covers the financial markets for several online publications. She received a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of South Florida.

    Zacks Investment Research

    is an A+ Rated BBB

    Accredited Business.