US Coins

United States Mint seeks public comment on mutilated coins

Redemption of United States coins that are mutilated, like the 1996-D Roosevelt dime, illustrated, and redemption rates based on current compositions, will be revised under proposed regulation changes. The current redemption rate for cents is based on the pre-1982 brass composition, like the 1964 cent, and not the copper-plated zinc composition, like that of the nearly indistinguishable copper-plated zinc 1998 Lincoln cent.

Coin World images.

The United States Mint is accepting public comments through Sept. 15 on proposed regulation changes involving the redemption of uncurrent and mutilated coins.

The Mint’s proposal to amend Treasury regulations is aimed to update redemption rates and procedures as well as resolve what Mint officials indicate is “an apparent contradiction” in the current regulation. The last time the regulations were revised was in July 1999.

Under existing regulations, “Uncurrent” U.S. coins are defined as coins “which are merely worn or reduced in weight by natural abrasion yet are readily and clearly recognizable and machine countable.”

“Mutilated coins” are defined as “all coins that are bent, broken, corroded, not whole, melted together and not machine countable.”

Existing redemption procedures can be found online here

According to the Mint’s proposed regulation amendments, the procedures for redemption of uncurrent coins would be clarified. The public will be instructed to deposit the uncurrent coins with a financial institution that will accept them, or with a depository institution that has a direct relationship with a Federal Reserve Bank.

Rates for the redemption of certain bent and partial coins, based on the Mint’s proposed regulation revisions, would be updated to reflect current values for the compositions of coins being redeemed.

“For example, in the current regulation, the rate for one-cent coins is $1.4585 per pound; this rate was derived from the weight of brass one-cent coins (3.11 grams or 0.1097 ounces each), which the United States Mint has not minted and issued since 1982,” according to the Mint’s proposal. “The weight of the current copper-plated zinc one-cent coins (2.50 grams or 0.0882 ounces each), however, makes their redemption rate $1.8100 per pound. The proposed rule revises the redemption rate for unmixed quantities of these copper-plated zinc one-cent coins.”

The Mint’s proposed regulation revisions would also resolve the issue of whether the Mint will accept fused and mixed coins for redemption.

The Mint proposal recommends a regulation clarification that “will eliminate any suggestion that the bureau will accept fused or mixed coins for redemption.”

The proposed regulation revisions, and how to present comments about them, can be found posted on the Federal Register here

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