Savings bond redemption is a fairly simple process. It will be necessary to take the savings bond to a bank and request to cash it; generally, one will need to be an account holder at the bank. Identification such as a driver's license or other government issued ID will be required, especially if one's name is different on the savings bond than it currently is, which may occur to due a marriage, for example. Typically, the only case in which a person can cash a savings bond not made out directly to him or herself is if the holder of the savings bond has passed away. In this case, a death certificate will usually be needed in order to cash the bond.
It is important to remember that savings bonds are non-transferable in all other cases. If the bond is not made out to an individual, he or she will not be permitted to cash it at any financial institution, even if it is signed by the individual who owns the savings bond. Any questions regarding savings bond redemption, and whether or not one is allowed to cash a particular savings bond, should be directed to the financial institution. One of the most important things to consider is how much the bonds are currently worth.
Most savings bonds have a period of maturity of at least a few years; some as much as 10 or 20 years or longer. This depends on the type of bond, and when it was purchased. Information about savings bond redemption and the amount that specific bonds are worth can be found by searching online, where free savings bond calculators and earnings tables can provide the details. It is important to wait until the bonds have fully matured before cashing them in, so the most interest can be earned. Cashing the savings bonds before they have matured will result in loss of interest.
There may be monetary limits on savings bond redemption at one time at a financial institution. Those wishing to redeem savings bonds in larger amounts may need to mail them to a government department in order to cash them. Otherwise, as long as identification is presented, and the savings bonds are made out to the correct individual, or he or she can present proof of eligibility to cash the bonds, the process is simple. The earnings gained from savings bond redemption must be reported on income taxes at the end of the year.