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Savings-Bonds-Alert: Possession is 0% of the law

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Possession is 0% of the law

My great uncle had two $1,000 series E savings bonds. In July 1978 he gave me his WW II footlocker with its contents. He died in 1979 with no wife or children. His only relative was my grandmother. I found the bonds by accident three months ago in the footlocker. When I filled out the forms to cash them, the Treasury said I couldn't have the money and instead gave it (almost $15,000!) to my father and his brothers and sisters. Whatever happened to posession is 9/10's of the law? Tom's response "Possession is 9/10s of the law" isn't actually the law, particularly when it comes to savings bonds. In fact, for savings bonds, possession is meaningless. All that counts is the name on the bond. Since the person named on these bonds had died, his heirs become the owners.


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