Gain not pain for couple after help selling shares – The Crusader

They could have papered the walls of a palace with all share certificates they had accumulated over the years and a couple had long wanted to cash in their assets. 

But fear of a monumental task and navigating daunting digital processes led to anguished procrastination for Keith and Greta James.

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Turning 80 this year however spurred them into seeking out a helping hand with the practicalities so transactions could be swift, simple and sure. 

And this is what they have largely got after support from Crusader and expert guidance from shares registrar Equiniti. 

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The James’ experience was more mixed when they did it alone with other registrars, but with £4,000 in the bag and another £4,000 on its way what could have been a complicated struggle is working out positively. 

Their immaculate record keeping has speeded up their quest with Keith listing the companies and share amounts when approaching Crusader.

These ranged from Lloyds Bank, Centrica and BP to National Grid, Saga and International Airlines Group (British Airways).

“We purchased them when life was more simple and we receive additional ones when dividends are announced,” he explained. 

Registrars (details of which particular one is on the certificate) are the ones to head to and Equiniti has now assisted the couple in locating and selling these shares. 

Where Equiniti is not involved, it has provided details of how they can get in touch with the relevant registrars for those companies.

Proving ownership by sending proof is required.

“But we’re on our way, nearly there in fact and so thankful,” Keith and Greta told Crusader.

[Couple’s names have been changed]

Selling shares: how to do it  

Equiniti offers three routes to selling the shares for companies where it is the registrar: online, telephone (with security checks) and by post (keep copies).

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For its clear guide, visit

Shareholders can sell and buy paper share certificates and shares held in an electronic format, known as CSN – Corporate Sponsored Nominee.

Its customer services team are on hand to support during transactions and post trade. They can also help check if dividends have been received and paid. Note however the service cannot provide financial advice. 

If you have lost track of assets and they are registered with Equiniti it can help trace them. 

To do this you need to get as much information as possible beforehand. As well as helping the search succeed, it also validates ownership and prevents fraudsters fishing for lost assets. 

Information required includes: asset name, holder’s full name – and any previous ones, address and any previous ones.

It is also worth noting that registrars cannot see share ownership that sits within nominee companies. They see nominee holdings on the company register, not the ultimate share owners that sit within the nominee provider.  

A wider debate is underway about online registration and the digitalisation of shares (versus paper format) with the Digitalisation Taskforce conducting a consultation. See also linked here an announcement from Equiniti on its support of M&S’s digital share ownership transformation campaign:

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