International Asset Services

Medallion Guarantees obtained, shares valued, transferred and sold, reseals and foreign Grants obtained, and overseas bank accounts closed by our experienced team.

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Federal Transfer Certificate

Are you dealing with an estate that includes shares and other assets in the USA? If the value of the US estate at the date of death exceeded $60,000 USD, you will need to obtain a Federal Transfer Certificate from the Internal Revenue Services in the USA. Known as Form 5173, obtaining this document involves submission of numerous papers, including Form 706-NA and tax paperwork, to the IRS. It’s necessary to demonstrate the applicability of the relevant double taxation treaty, and it can be a lengthy and frustrating process for the uninitiated, with official guidance often opaque and confusing.

It takes about a year to get this Certificate, so to prevent delays in winding up the administration of the estate, it’s advisable to start discussing this as soon as you have your UK Probate document or Confirmation, or even before.

Finders has years of experience at preparing Federal Transfer Certificate applications for estates, and overseeing the process to completion, on a standalone basis or incorporated the work of selling the estate’s US shares or closing the bank or investment account. Contact us to discuss your requirements.

Why do I need a Medallion Signature Guarantee Stamp?

For someone who is living outside the US and holding stock in a US or Canadian listed company, the only way to sell the shares or transfer the ownership into a different name is to submit a Medallion Guarantee stamped Transfer Request or Stock Power Form to the transfer agent along with various required documents.

What is it?

The Medallion Guarantee (above) is stamped onto the Transfer Request Form. It acts as official authentication of the validity and authority of the person initiating the transfer. The stamp shows the transfer agent that the signature is genuine, enabling them to proceed with their instruction to transfer or sell the stock. It is intended to protect shareholders and transfer agents alike from fraud. With this in mind, the stamp providers must therefore assure themselves that the person initiating a transfer of securities is who they say they are.

Who can issue them?

Providers of the Medallion Guarantee Stamp in the UK are all members of the Securities Transfer Agents Medallion Program (STAMP). They comprise a handful of companies in the UK who are authorised to issue the Medallion Guarantee Stamp but only when they are entirely satisfied that all criteria have been meticulously observed.
As agent to a STAMP member, Finders International provides a no-nonsense , quick turnaround service at no extra cost to the customer. They will ensure that all the documentation is present and correct before sending on to the stamp provider, helping prevent delays occurring while additional documentation is sought.

To sell or transfer US or Canadian Securities, you need to sign a stock transfer form (or its equivalent) and the signature needs to be “guaranteed” before a transfer agent will accept the transaction.

The cost of one stamp is

€ 325.20 *
  • + VAT(€400)
  • Additional stamps in the same order will cost €256.10 + VAT (€315) for each stamp

For assistance with your enquiry please contact us now.

Contact Louise Levene

International Asset Services Manager

Contact Yewande Akeju

International Asset Services Assistant

Offshore grants and reseals

UK estates increasingly comprise varied liquid assets overseas – these could be anything from shares in Canada to a bank account in Australia or the USA, to a shareholding in Hong Kong or Singapore, or an account in Jersey, the Isle of Man or Gibraltar. With a network of associates in the these areas we can obtain Grants and Reseals with the maximum of efficiency.

Prices start from

£ 750
  • + VAT
  • This price does not include disbursements costs such as local Probate Court fees.

Resealing the Grant or Confirmation A ‘reseal’ is, literally, the seal of the court in the jurisdiction in which the dead person’s asset is located, affixed to the grant of probate or confirmation. This gives the grant the same authority that a grant obtained in that jurisdiction would have had. Reseals are possible in countries that are subject to the Colonial Probate Act, or which are closely allied to the UK (such as somewhere like Gibraltar), and tend to be Commonwealth countries like Australia, Canada, Hong Kong and Malaysia, for example. Financial institutions and share registrars in many jurisdictions will have their own compliance thresholds for the value of assets in that jurisdiction, above which they will need either a local grant to be obtained from the court, or for the English grant of representation or Scottish confirmation to be resealed in the local court.

Local Grants For other jurisdictions, their court rules require the estate to obtain a ‘full’ grant of probate or similar; for example, in Jersey, the Isle of Man and Ireland. In some of these jurisdictions, the existence of an English grant or Scottish confirmation will smooth the way. In others, the process can be long and complex. The process can be hardest to predict in the US where, in addition to federal laws, each State has its own rules and laws governing how probate should be obtained. Some involve lengthy “prescription periods” during which the estate must advertise for creditors in the area where the grant is being obtained, preventing access to the assets.

Overseas Estates with UK Assets Some clients need the reverse: for their own grant to be resealed in England and Wales, or for local English probate to be obtained (where the country of domicile is not a Commonwealth jurisdiction). Finders can help here, too – contact us to discuss further.

Getting Quotes

Finders International has new and competitive prices to help you obtain Grants from Jersey and the Isle of Man. All fees are subject to sight of estate documents. All documents and information are received in confidence, and without obligation, and no costs are incurred without your express authorisation.

If you’re interested in obtaining a firm quote for work in any of the jurisdictions mentioned in this article, please supply us with copies of the following:

  • Death certificate
  • English grant and will, or Scottish confirmation
  • Details of all assets in the jurisdiction requiring the reseal or grant. We will ask you for originals, and additional documentation at a later date.

Netsai Mupikata

Yewande Akeju

For assistance with your enquiry please contact us now.

Overseas Account Closures

In an increasingly mobile world, it’s no longer unusual for UK residents to find themselves, whether through work or property ownership, with a bank account abroad. It might have proved troublesome for the account holder to close, or it may have been forgotten entirely, and so becomes an asset, and a potential problem, for the estate.

As many have found, it can be a lengthy and time consuming process to fulfil foreign banks’ requirements to close accounts of deceased persons who are not nationals of the country concerned. Even getting a date of death balance to accurately report the value of the asset to HMRC might take a long time. The banks’ exact instructions can be hard to pin down as they may vary with each account; and UK residents may have to clear a number of obstacles before the account can be closed, such as dealing with bank officials in different departments, arranging for official translations of estate documents, or attendance at Consular offices, for example. Delays, culture and language clashes, and banks’ own increasingly stringent privacy and security policies, can all prove extremely frustrating for Executors.

Finders can assist you with the work of closing accounts in a variety of overseas jurisdictions: please contact us for a tailored quotation.


Selling UK and International Shares

Finders offer a complete service from receipt of documents to sale of shares, including obtaining a Federal Transfer Certificate (tax clearance from the IRS) and Medallion Guarantee stamps.

UK prices start from

€ 85
  • + VAT

For the sale of international shares a bespoke quotation is required. To proceed, please contact us or simply fill in the online form below, or download and print it here.

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