I Lost My Safety Deposit Box Key. Now What?

|

Feb 2, 2023

Updated

Jul 13, 2024

Trustworthy is an intelligent digital vault that protects and optimizes your family's information so that you can save time, money, and enjoy peace of mind.

I Lost My Safety Deposit Box Key. Now What?

|

Feb 2, 2023

Updated

Jul 13, 2024

Trustworthy is an intelligent digital vault that protects and optimizes your family's information so that you can save time, money, and enjoy peace of mind.

I Lost My Safety Deposit Box Key. Now What?

|

Feb 2, 2023

Updated

Jul 13, 2024

Trustworthy is an intelligent digital vault that protects and optimizes your family's information so that you can save time, money, and enjoy peace of mind.

I Lost My Safety Deposit Box Key. Now What?

|

Feb 2, 2023

Updated

Jul 13, 2024

Trustworthy is an intelligent digital vault that protects and optimizes your family's information so that you can save time, money, and enjoy peace of mind.

The intelligent digital vault for families

Trustworthy protects and optimizes important family information so you can save time, money, and enjoy peace of mind

The intelligent digital vault for families

Trustworthy protects and optimizes important family information so you can save time, money, and enjoy peace of mind

If you’ve lost your safety deposit box key, you’ve come to the right place. Whether your key was lost or stolen, there are a few ways you can access your box and protect the valuables inside. 

So, what do you do if you’ve lost the key to your box? We’ll break down what to do, plus we’ll get into specifics of major banks' protocols. 

Key Takeaways

  • If you lose your safety deposit box key, you can use a duplicate or have a locksmith force the box open.

  • The first thing you should do if your key is missing is inform your bank and review the lost key policy.

  • The cost of replacing a safety deposit box key ranges between $50 and $200.

Do You Need To Be Worried If You Lose Your Safety Deposit Box Key?

worried if you lose your safety deposit box key

Losing your safety deposit box key can be stressful, but try your best not to panic. While it might seem like a major inconvenience, there’s usually a viable solution to access your valuables. Most safety deposit boxes come with two keys. If you lose one, you can use the duplicate to access your box. 

In the case where both keys are lost, the bank will need to organize a professional locksmith to force open the box in your presence (and at your expense). Although this process can be lengthy and expensive, at least you know there is a way to access your safety deposit box if you misplace both keys.

Furthermore, it would be virtually impossible for someone to access your safety deposit box if they got their hands on your keys. For starters, banks have state-of-the-art security systems inside their vaults. A person would need proper clearance and legal documents from the bank to even access the room in which your box is located. 

Even if you have your key, you need to undergo a rigorous identification process that includes:

  • Checking your fingerprints

  • Facial recognition

  • Passwords

  • Security questions

Michael Churchill from Presidio Wealth Partners explains the downside to losing your keys: "It’s hard to open your bank box without your keys. … If you use a safe deposit box, securely storing your keys to access the box is important.” 

Never lose your safety deposit box key again. Trustworthy is designed to protect, optimize, and organize all of your important information. Create a document with details on the location of your safety deposit box key and safely store it. Ensure your family is prepared for all life moments and emergencies with Trustworthy. Start your free trial.

Immediate Steps to Take If You've Lost Your Safety Deposit Box Key

If you can’t find either of your safety deposit box keys, here are some immediate steps to take to protect your belongings:

  • Check every possible place one of your keys might be

  • Contact your bank promptly and inform them you’ve lost your keys

  • Notify them of anyone who might imitate your identity (if your keys were stolen)

  • Review your security deposit box leasing contract for lost key policy

  • Purchase insurance on your deposit box (optional)

Lost Safety Deposit Box Key: Bank of America

If one of your Bank of America safety deposit box keys is lost, you need to notify Bank of America as quickly as possible. You can bring one of your remaining keys to your box location to have the locks changed and receive a new replacement key.

Bank of America recommends contacting their branch during normal banking hours for the next steps if both your security deposit keys are misplaced. 

Lost Safety Deposit Box Key: Wells Fargo

Since Wells Fargo doesn’t insure any valuables kept in their safety deposit boxes, it’s recommended that you get coverage from a third party. They also don’t carry any copies of your keys, but only a guard key that’s needed to open your box.

The only way Wells Fargo can open your safety deposit box without your keys is to drill the lock. You or your legal representation must be present during this process, and the bank can change the lock and issue new keys for your box. 

Lost Safety Deposit Box Key: Chase

Chase requires that you notify them immediately if you’ve misplaced one or more of your keys. You also need to notify the bank if you’ve surrendered any of your keys, so they can change the locks. 

If your Chase safety deposit box pin has been compromised, you need to contact the branch right away to make arrangements. Furthermore, Chase doesn’t allow you to make duplicates of your keys. 

Lost Safety Deposit Box Key: TD

TD can provide you with a replacement safety deposit key for a fee of $50. The bank can also drill into the lock if necessary. You’ll also need to inform them right away if one or more of your keys are lost or stolen. 

Lost Safety Deposit Box Key: Citibank

Citibank gives each licensee two keys to their leased safety deposit box. Like most banks, Citibank requires that you inform them of a misplaced or stolen safety deposit box key. They can drill into the lock if needed, but it will be at your expense.

Is There a Cost to Losing Your Safety Deposit Box Key?

cost of losing your safety deposit box key

Above, we mention that drilling needs to be done to the lock if both keys are lost. For almost all banks, the drilling fee is covered by the safety deposit box licensee. Some banks do offer replacement keys, and it varies between organizations.

The cost of a replacement key is typically between $50 and $100. If you need to drill into the lock, you can expect to pay between $150 and $200. That’s why it’s recommended to check everywhere for your key or try to get a replacement before drilling. 

Not only will it cost you money, but it could also prevent you from accessing your valuables when you need them. To expedite the process, contact your bank as soon as you realize your keys are missing. 

If you’re looking for a safe and reliable way to keep all your sensitive information safe, Trustworthy can manage and organize your important documents including safety box keys. Our easy tools allow you to control what information you share with your family and loved ones. Start a free trial with Trustworthy today.

How Quickly Can You Get a New Key for Your Safety Deposit Box?

During normal banking hours, you can usually secure a new key within a few working days. However, banks don’t process replacements during the weekend. As a result, notifying your bank on a Friday could mean 4 to 5 days before you can access your safety deposit box.

Does the Bank Have a Copy of Your Key?

Banks do have a key that can open your safety deposit box, but your key also needs to be present. In other words, you or your bank can’t open the box without both keys unless you drill into the lock. 

The bank's key is also known as a guard key. You insert your key into one side of the box, and the banker needs to insert their guard key at the same time for the box to open. 

What to Do If You've Lost the Key of Someone Who Died

safety deposit box key of someone who died

Opening a safety deposit box after a death can be quite complicated, but it’s not impossible. 

Given that there are over 25 million safety deposit boxes in the United States, chances are, some of the owners have already passed. 

As a result, banks and courts have a process so the beneficiaries can access the goods inside:

  • Identifying somebody who can file a petition with the court (usually a spouse or relative of the deceased). Usually, the named beneficiary will be able to file a petition with the court to open a deceased person’s safety deposit box.


  • Locating the safety deposit box. Finding the location of a deceased person’s safety deposit box can be tricky. The location will likely be in their will or known by their attorney. You can also try contacting banks around their residence to see if they leased a box.

  • Filing with the court to request permission to open the safety deposit box. You’ll need to fill out paperwork at the Surrogate Court. The clerk will need to review your case, and you'll need to pay a fee to send the petition to the judge. Once signed, you can list the items inside the box for collection at the court.

  • Notifying the bank to review the valuables. Finally, you’ll need to take your paperwork (signed petition, death certificate, court inventory, personal ID) to the bank to review the valuables. If you don’t have the keys, the bank will need to drill into the lock at your expense. 

This process helps family members access the estate of their deceased spouse or relative.  

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will it take to regain access to my safety deposit box?

The process can take a few days to a couple of weeks, depending on the bank’s procedures and locksmith availability.

What security measures are in place during the lock replacement process?

The bank ensures that the process is secure by requiring identification, possibly additional verification steps, and having the box owner present during the opening and replacement of the lock.

Other Safety Deposit Box Resources

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