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Treasury EE Bonds FAQs

   What is the difference between EE and I Bonds?

The biggest difference is the interest rate you receive on your bonds. Earnings for EE Bonds are calculated as 90% of 6-month averages of 5-year Treasury Securities market yields. Earnings for I Bonds are calculated by combining a fixed rate of return and a semiannual inflation rate based on the CPI-U.

   What should I do if my paper savings bond has been lost, stolen, or destroyed?

Simply complete the form for “Lost, Stolen, or Destroyed U.S. Savings Bonds ” (Form PD F 1048) and mail it to the address provided on the form.

If you don't have a listing of your savings bonds' issue dates and serial numbers, write to Savings Bonds, Parkersburg, WV 26106-1328 describing the bonds as fully as possible and requesting a search of our records. We will replace your savings bonds if we can establish that a person entitled to cash the bonds hasn't done so. In the future, we'll offer conversion of paper certificates to electronic form in a TreasuryDirect account. You may want to consider this alternative when it's offered.

   What should I do if I haven't received my paper EE Bond certificates in the mail?

If you haven't received your paper savings bonds at least 15 business days after you've ordered them, check one of the following:

  • Financial Institution — contact the financial institution where you ordered the bond.

  • Payroll Savings Plan — contact your payroll office.

  • Go to the Treasury Hunt — our searchable online database includes savings bonds returned by the Postal Service as undelivered.

If you buy EE Bonds through TreasuryDirect you will not receive paper bonds. TreasuryDirect is an all-electronic online account. In the future, we'll offer conversion of paper certificates to electronic form in a TreasuryDirect account. You may want to consider this alternative when it's offered.

   If my paper EE/E Bond contains a misspelling, incorrect address, or incorrect Social Security Number, do I need to get this corrected?

  • Misspelled Name — EE/E Bonds don't need to be reissued to correct minor typographical errors in names. The bond needs to be reissued if the error is significant enough to prevent the bond owner from cashing it. To get a bond reissued, just fill out and sign the proper Reissue form (PD F 4000) and mail it to the Federal Reserve Bank for your area.

  • Incorrect Address — EE/E Bonds don't need to be reissued to correct the address that appears on the bonds.

  • Incorrect Social Security Number — EE/E Bonds don't need to be reissued to correct a Social Security Number. The Social Security Number does not establish ownership or tax liability but serves only to locate savings bond records if, for example, the bonds are lost and the owner has not kept a record of serial numbers. Be sure to keep a record of all your bonds including serial numbers.

   What is the Education Savings Bond Program?

Qualified taxpayers may be able to exclude all or part of the interest earned from eligible EE and I Bonds issued after 1989. Bonds must be issued in the name of a taxpayer age 24 or older on that date at the time of issuance and must be used to pay for qualified educational expenses. Other restrictions and income limits apply. See more details on the education tax exclusion or IRS Form 8815.

   What is the penalty if I cash my bond during the first 5 years?

If you cash a bond before it is 5 years old, you will forfeit the last 3 months' interest.

   What are Patriot Bonds?

Paper EE Bonds purchased through financial institutions or previously purchased online are inscribed with the words “Patriot Bond.”

   How can I determine the value of my EE/E Bonds?

To determine the value of your EE/E Bonds, you can use our online Savings Bond Calculator or use our free Savings Bonds Wizard software for Windows computers. Either of these options is an easy and quick way to keep a record of your savings bonds and find out what they are worth.

   I'd like to buy a savings bond as a gift. What if I don't know the owner's Social Security Number?

If you don't know the Social Security Number of the recipient of the bond, you may use your own. The Social Security Number printed on the savings bond does not establish tax liability or ownership but is used only to locate records if the savings bond is lost, stolen, or destroyed, should the owner not have a record of the serial number.