Counter Signatures / Indemnities
Sometimes the paper share certificate issued to the deceased becomes lost in the mists of time. In the United Kingdom the share registrars usually ask for a Countersignature to the Indemnity Form issued by the share registrars, and we can arrange for such Countersignature. The premium payable to the insurers in such cases is about 1% when the shares are worth less than £50,000.
If the shares are worth more than £50,000 then we will arrange for the Countersignature to be issued by our specialist insurers, and the premium in such cases is usually much higher (2.5% – 4% is not uncommon).
You should note that even though we will be supervising the transaction on your behalf, the specialist insurers usually require such Countersignature to be arranged through a regulated entity such as a law firm / accountant / regulated financial adviser.
This of course adds to the overall costs, but when the end result is that the new share certificate is issued (or the shares are re-issued in electronic form) so that the underlying shares can now be sold or transferred in the general market (which they could not be before the countersignature was obtained) the fees and costs involved and the premium charged is a small price to pay.