Worker finds a billion lire of his grandfather’s government bonds at home, but expired: “I’m suing Bank of Italy”

The box of government bonds found in the house during some work could have changed his life, but the bitter discovery, for a 50-year-old worker in the province of Frosinone, was not long in coming: that treasure has expired and the billion old lire cannot be redeemed. For Bankitalia, those titles accumulated by his grandfather in the fascist era and hidden in the house are no longer valid.

Inside the hiding place in the wall, in Ceccano, the worker found in a wooden box, wrapped in sheets of newspaper, a decidedly full-bodied patrimony: an interest-bearing voucher of five hundred lire from 1937 with the effigy of Vittorio Emanuele III, coupons from twelve lire and 25 cents and an amortization plan which on expiry (in 1962) would have yielded one billion of the old lire. Also in the container is a ledger with now illegible notes from his grandfather, a farmer who had lost his memory in old age.

«I was very close to my grandfather and I like to think that he was the one who guided me to discover that wooden box hidden inside the wall with the government bonds. Like the men of his day, he was a great saver. It is a pity that the fruit of his sacrifices has only now come out and you risk being in vain », said the worker.

On the possibility of a lawsuit, the precedents speak quite clearly: similar disputes between private individuals and Bank of Italy have ended up without success for the heirs. But the worker still wants to try, also to honor his grandfather’s sacrifices. «There would be conflicting jurisprudential opinions despite the circular from the Bank of Italy excluding the possibility of collection – explain the lawyers, recalling that the amount at stake is considerable. Between monetary revaluation and interest, we are talking about at least two million euros».

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