When you invest in a certificate of deposit, you receive an actual piece of paper from the bank listing the certificate number, the amount of the deposit and the terms, such as the interest rate and the length of time the money will be held. A fire, flood or other unforeseen event could result in this paper record being destroyed. Thanks to the advent of electronic records, getting a replacement certificate is no longer a major ordeal and can usually be done quickly.
Locate any bank statements showing your account details. For instance, some bank statements will show the balances in your checking, savings, brokerage and even CD accounts in one combined statement. If you have this type of statement, you will be able to locate the certificate number. If not, you should go on to the next step and your bank will have to do a search on their end.
Contact the customer service department of the bank that issued your CD. Even if the bank has been taken over by another institution, your accounts should be converted under your name and Social Security number. Explain the situation that the CD has been lost and you are requesting a replacement.
Provide any documentation requested by the bank to confirm your identity. The bank may ask for your birth certificate, Social Security number or other forms of ID. Mail, fax or hand-deliver copies of these documents for verification.
Sign the necessary documentation, such as an affidavit stating that you are in fact who you claim to be and that the CD has been lost. This will protect the bank and the true owner of the CD in the event of fraud.
Pay the fee for having the CD reissued. Some banks require fees such as surety bonds for the re-issue of a lost CD. The amount is usually nominal in comparison to the overall value of the CD but protects the bank in case of fraud.
Wait while the bank reissues the certificate. The bank may decide to issue a new CD account number or simply reprint the original document.
If your bank has gone out of business completely (and was not taken over by another institution), you need to contact the FDIC. Every CD is insured up to $250,000. When a CD is purchased, the details of the transaction are sent to the FDIC so that it can be properly insured. By providing the documentation mentioned above, you will be able to recover the cash value of your CD.