I just found out (from /r/personalfinance) that TreasuryDirect now allows adding new bank accounts without having to mail that dreaded FS Form 5512!!! Unfortunately, the form is still required to edit bank information, so be careful when adding the new accounts – you won’t be able to edit them online. You should be able to delete them though, so delete+add may just do the trick. If you want to change your primary funding source to a new one, you must make that selection while adding the new account, since it can’t be done after. Read the new instructions here before proceeding. Don’t know how many bank accounts can be added.
This is a great (and long overdue) development, because FS Form 5512 requires a medallion signature guarantee, which may not be easy to get. When I needed it many years ago (IIRC to open the TD account), I had to deal with lots of clueless Chase reps before finding out there’s only one person in the region who could do it, then driving to his branch and dealing with more clueless tellers just to find him.
Then delete your old account. You can’t delete a primary account, but you should be able to delete all others. You may first have to go through all your securities to make sure any proceeds are deposited into the new account.
This is somewhat securely controlled – it will ask a “security question” before displaying the add form. It’ll also send an email. And they claim to do some kind of bank account information verification as part of the process, so one would hope that bad actors couldn’t cash out our securities into some mule accounts.
The form mentions acceptable seals or stamps, which includes Signature Guaranteed, Endorsement Guaranteed, Corporate, etc. My guess is they’re just as difficult to obtain as the medallion, simply because low level bankers may not know about them and not every branch can provide it.
I’m not sure why they’re obsolete, but in my experience, they’re not a PITA if you’ve got a relationship with your banker. I’ve had to get one twice (can’t recall, but possibly a requirement for something at Fidelity), and the only PITA part was calling my Chase branch manager to find out when I should come in.
This brings up the question of how to secure a treasury direct account? Their two factor authentication is to send an email. In my case, to a Gmail address.
I’ve read that I can set up 2FA for Gmail but it seems like another pita. Has anyone been able to get them to send alerts? I looked around, trying to see if I could get an alert when their 1099 was available, but could not find a way.
I received an email today from treasury direct notifying me that I had a 1099 on their site. They also provide a link to a video on how to access it. Incredibly complex if you have accounts from paper bonds that you transferred to electronic form.