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Medallion signature guarantee for an estate in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, PA |

I'm executor of an estate where the decedent had a mutual fund. In order to sell the shares and transfer the proceeds to the estate, I need to acquire a Medallion signature guarantee. The bank for the estate bank account doesn't offer this service. I've gone to other banks and they won't provide it either since I'm not a customer.

Does anybody have a solution? Am I going to have to suck it up and open a bank account so I can get this done? If I don't sell the shares and they are transferred to me when the estate is closed (I'm the sole heir), will I still need a Medallion signature guarantee to sell the shares.

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

As you have learned, a Medallion signature is given by a financial institution, which makes that institution liable for the full value of the shares/cash in an account. That is why a Medallion signature rather than merely a notarization is required.

If you have your own account, as opposed to the estate's account, in a bank or you have a personal brokerage account, your bank or brokerage firm may be willing to provide the guaranty so that you can redeem/sell the shares.

I suspect you are dealing with a mutual fund. If this is the case, there are no physical shares, as there are with publicly traded stocks, that you can request be transferred to you or another broker.

Dealing with financial institutions can be a pain in the you know what, but the best policy to avoid aggravation is to go with the flow. If you need to open an account at a local bank to secure the Medallion signature, do so otherwise you will spend hours and/or legal fees to get the result you want, and probably still wind-up having to secure the Medallion signature.

The foregoing is not intended to be legal advice upon which you may rely as I have not been retained for this purpose.

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Posted

Thank you for the explanation. You offer some practical advice.

Posted

If the previous attorney's recommendation don't pan out, open a new account with a bank that also provides investment services. A bank that provides investments will also provide the medallion guarantee.

This answer does not, nor is it intended to, create an attorney-client relationship or constitute attorney advertising. Rather, it is offered solely for information purposes. Since the facts of each case are different, it is critical to consult with qualified counsel with whom information can be shared and assessed under an attorney-client privilege, so that competent advice can be obtained on which you can make informed decisions.

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I agree, the previous attorney provided some sound advice. Thanks for your tip as well.

Posted

Here is an idea. Go to a large financial fund like Fidelity Investments. Open the estate account with them. You can have free checking with them, free checks and transfer the mutual fund in kind to them if you so choose. And most importantly they will provide the Medallion signature guarantee with no questions asked and with no fee. Does this sound like a good idea to you?

Also you may want to have an estates attorney assist you in the estate administration. For a sense of what is involved in administering an estate in most states, please see the following two articles: Estate & Probate Administration: Do Not Try This On Your Own at http://www.sjfpc.com/page1.html and Pennsylvania Probate & Estate Administration: Executor Duties at http://www.sjfpc.com/Pennsylvania_Probate_Estate__Administration_Duties_of_Executor_and_Administrator.html.

Hope this helps.

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Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law throughout the state of PA with offices in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties. He is authorized to handle IRS matters throughout the United States. His phone number is 215-735-2336 or his email address is sjfpc@comcast.net , his website is www.sjfpc.com. and his blog is

LEGAL DISCLAIMER Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law throughout the state of PA with offices in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties. He is authorized to handle IRS matters throughout the United States. His phone number is 215-735-2336 or his email address is sjfpc@comcast.net , his website is www.sjfpc.com. and his blog is <http://frommtaxes.wordpress.com/> Mr. Fromm is ethically required to state that the response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/ client relationship. Also, there are no recognized legal specialties under Pennsylvania law. Any references to a trust, estate or tax lawyer refer only to the fact that Mr. Fromm limits his practice to these areas of the law. These responses are only in the form of legal education and are intended to only provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that if known could significantly change the reply or make such reply unsuitable. Mr. Fromm strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their state in order to ensure proper advice is received. By using this site you understand and agree that there is no attorney client relationship or confidentiality between you and the attorney responding. This site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in the subject area in your jurisdiction, who is familiar with your specific facts and all of the circumstances and with whom you have an attorney client relationship. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. The information and materials provided are general in nature, and may not apply to a specific factual or legal circumstance described in the question or omitted from the question. Circular 230 Disclaimer - Any information in this comment may not be used to eliminate or reduce penalties by the IRS or any other governmental agency.

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Posted

That's a good idea, but unfortunately I already opened up an estate account. Thanks anyway. I'm probably going to open up a bank account with an institution who will give the stamp, then close it afterwords. I just wish there was an easier way. I also plan on selling my of shares mutual funds so that my heirs won't have to deal with this hassle. Thanks.

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