The U.S. Mint has had a program to purchase mutilated U.S. coins until recently when the U.S. Government filed lawsuits against three international companies for allegedly including counterfeit coins they were selling to the Mint. Last year, the Mint suspended the redemption program as a consequence of these lawsuits. It also began a study the counterfeiting problem and expect to propose solutions to thwart similar alleged schemes. In the meantime, scrap processors are not able to redeem mutilated coins they recover from used cars after going through an auto shredder or because of other activities.
ISRI has contacted the U.S. Mint to inquire whether it will once again extend the redemption program after the current six month extension expires on November 2, 2016. At first, the Mint’s representative told ISRI it depended upon whether the security study it commissioned (to prevent the purchase of counterfeit coins) was completed.
ISRI also requested that a Member of Congress inquire of the Mint if it will end the moratorium on buying back mutilated coins after the November 2 suspension of the buy-back program is scheduled to conclude. The Congressman’s office was informed that the suspension will likely be extended because the three lawsuits it has filed for counterfeiting coins will not have been resolved.
ISRI’s President Robin Wiener, has also wriiten to the Secretary of the Treasury, Jack Lew, and the head of the Bureau of the Mint and requested a meeting to discuss the matter. In addition, in light of the information that the Mint plans to extend its moratorium on purchasing mutilated coins, ISRI plans to accelerate its work on Capitol Hill in an attempt to convince the Mint to end its mutilated coin buy-back program.