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How to Claim the Shares of a Deceased Loved One



How to Claim the Shares of a Deceased Loved One

By Gozie Joe


Dealing with the death of a loved one is always a hard, and painful thing. Though death is inevitable, it is not something that everyone plans for. Thus, in the event of dying with the absence of a Will (intestate), getting shares of your deceased loved one transmitted to you (as he or she would have intended), is quite a tedious affair, that may certainly require the use of a legal practitioner. Learn more about who can inherit from the estate of a deceased loved one. This will give you an insight of how to get shares of a deceased loved one transmitted.

Procedure for Transmission of Shares

  1. Naturally, the obvious first step will be to apply for Probate Letter of Administration at the courts. HOWEVER, you must ascertain the whole estate of shares, in order to avoid constant back and forth with the court, due to the need to alter said Letter of Administration (re-sealing). Therefore, the first step would be to visit the Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) at 5th Floor, Muktar El Yakub Place (UK Visa Application office building, Plot 1129, Zakariya Maimatari Street, Central Business District, Abuja). This agency is responsible for keeping a database of all shares, of all companies, trading on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. In order to access the portfolio of the deceased, for a search, you will need the following:
    • Valid means of identification.
    • Death Certificate of the deceased (preferably from a government-owned hospital).
    • Address or P.O. Box operated by the deceased, when buying the said shares.
    • Processing Fee (relative to a percentage of the total value of shares discovered). Note, cash payments are prohibited.

Having fulfilled these requirements, you will be given the listings of all shares, belonging to the deceased’s estate.

  1. Now that you have a comprehensive list of the shares, you may now apply for a Letter of Administration, to the Probate Registrar, of the relevant High Court, (depends on locality of the deceased), to include all the shares you searched for, at the Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS). Learn more about how to apply for Letters of Administration.


  1. Once you have obtained the Letters of Administration, and any other incidental document, that may accompany it, you have to visit the Registrars, of each company, in which your deceased has shares that you intend on transmitting to yourself. Most public companies engage a Registrar, whose function is to keep the register, of all its shareholders, whether alive or dead. Some of these companies may, on the other hand, establish a Registrars’ Department, within the company itself, to keep its own records of all its shareholders. Therefore, you must identify each, and every single Registrar, for every company, in which those shares, are located. For example, Nestle Nigeria plc, Unilever Nigeria Plc, and Union Bank of Nigeria, etc, all employ Greenwich Trusts Limited, as their Registrars. The following are documents needed, to effect the transmission of shares, successfully:
    • Four (4) photocopies of Letters of Administration. (Note, you must take the Original, for sighting).
    • Four (4) photocopies of Death Certificate. (Note, you must take the Original, for sighting).
    • Formal Letter, requesting the transmission of shares, (to be addressed to the Registrars), and four (4) photocopies, of the said Letter.
    • Original Share Certificates or Dividend Warrants, for endorsement, coupled with four (4) photocopies, of the same.
    • Four (4) photocopies of gazette or newspaper publication.
    • Consent Letter from other kin, that are not Administrators, on the Letters of Administration, within the nuclear family, of the deceased, consenting to the transmission of the shares, coupled with four (4) photocopies, of the said Letter.
    • The physical presence of the Administrators, in the Registrar’s respective office.
    • Four (4) photocopies of valid Means of Identification, for all Administrators.
    • Processing fee of the transmission of the shares, which is usually, 1% of the total value of the shares, sought to be transmitted. (Note that it may vary, from Registrar to Registrar, and prices may fluctuate, depending on present value of the said shares, on the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX).
    • Original and four (4) photocopies of Banker’s Confirmation of the Administrator’s signature (if more than one, then all), signed by two authorized bank signatories. (Note that the Banker’s Confirmation of Signature must also bear:
        • Date account was opened
        • Bank account number
        • Duly endorsed passport photograph.


Having complied with and fulfilled all of the aforementioned obligations, the shares will be transmitted to you. Note that processing time may vary among the various Registrars, so be sure to inquire specifically, amongst all the Registrars. Death may be the end of a loved one’s story, but should never be allowed to be the end of their financial legacy.

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