Full Guide to Recovering Lost Share Certificates

What is a Share Certificates?

A share certificate is a document that a company issues to its shareholders attesting their ownership in the company. Earlier companies used to issue a physical certificate called a “share certificate” under the common seal of the company, if any, signed by two directors or by a director and a company secretary, as per Section 46 of the Companies Act 2013 read in conjunction with Rule 5 of the Companies (Share Capital and Debentures) Rules, 2014. This certificate serves as prima facie evidence of the title of the person whose name appears on the certificate.

Many Indian shareholders who made stock market investments years ago still have physical share certificates in their possession. Investors have frequently misplaced or lost their share certificates, or their addresses have changed and they have not received the new share certificates issued by companies due to corporate actions over many years. This in no way implies that they have suffered a loss on their assets. Investors must apply for duplicate share certificates to be issued in order to recover their money. Once the certificates are received, the investors must have them converted to dematerialized form.

Process for issue of Duplicate Share Certificate:

Obtaining a duplicate share certificate may involve a drawn-out and difficult procedure, however the following steps will help:

  • The first step in the procedure is filing a formal complaint (FIR) with the police, providing details such as the company name, distinctive nos., folio number, certificate number and whose name the original share certificates were purchased. 
  • Newspaper advertisements in one nationally distributed newspaper and one newly published local language newspaper where the company’s registered office is located or
  • A demand draft shall be executed in the name of the concerned firm whose share certificates are missing, for a sum that the company may specify. 
  • To prove your identification as the owner of the misplaced share certificates, provide self-attested documents such as your Aadhaar card, PAN card, evidence of residency (both current and previous addresses), and proof of signature.
  • In the format specified by the business, submit an affidavit regarding the loss of share certificates. The company’s Registrar and Transfer Agents can provide the forms.
  • An indemnity bond along with the signatures of sureties and witnesses for duplicate share certificates might also be required.
  • A “Letter of Confirmation” or an “Entitlement Letter” will be issued by the Company or Registrar upon verification of the required documentation. 
  • “Letter of Confirmation” has to be submitted to your broker where you hold the demat account for getting the shares in your demat account.
  • IEPF Claim has to be filed in case shares have been transferred to the IEPF using the “Entitlement Letter” issued by the company.