Help me, Mifi hivemind! You're my only hope!
My Dad died in December 2012. He was a hoarder who often lost track of his money (and other things too). No surprise, he left a rather tangled estate, including twenty uncashed coupon bonds. All are long past maturity; I know that they stopped earning interest as soon as they matured, and probably we won't be able to get the interest, either. But I'd like to get the principal if possible, and I'm having a hard time finding out if they're redeemable at all.
He had uncashed Canada Savings Bonds too, but those are still legal tender, and I'm working on them with the bank. Also, the will has been probated and the estate can be distributed, so there's no problem there.
The ones I'm asking about are private company bonds, sold through the banks and labeled "redeemable at any branch of the *insert name here* bank". They're often called 'Sinking fund Debentures'. Most matured in the 80s, some in the 1990s. They were issued by Royal Bank of Canada, Ontario Hydro, Silverwood Dairies, Domtar, Trans Canada Pipeline and other firms. Some of these (Ontario Hydro, the Royal Bank) are still in business. Others have been absorbed, sold, or have simply died. Some of the bonds have old-style clippable coupons. They are not really bearer bonds, as they've all got his name on them and they're registered with someone, somewhere. They look like this
, and like this
on the back.
Two stockbrokers' vault departments can't deal with them, since they're not stocks, and the banks that I've taken them to have no idea what they are. Most stock search places will only trace stocks, not bonds. I think they have not yet been redeemed, as you had to surrender the certificate or get it 'cancelled' (stamped, punched or pierced) to do that.
Does anyone have any idea how to redeem them? Do I contact the companies directly? Is there a particular office I can deal with in the major banks?
And I do know about Scriptopoly, but I'd like to see if we can get some money from the still-existing companies that Dad gave cash to back in 1974.