Melting Silver Coins: Is It Illegal to Melt Precious Metals?


Have you ever wondered if it’s illegal to melt precious metals? Well, you’re not the only one. With a growing demand for investment and rising prices of precious metals across the world, people have begun melting bullion bars and other coins so that they can be used as raw materials for manufacturing other things. With a current market value of around $9 trillion, the precious metals industry is big business. It’s no wonder that so many people are interested in finding out if it’s legal to melt silver coins in your home mint or business. Let’s look at some of the laws surrounding this topic.

Is it Legal to Melt?

First things first, you should know that it is legal to melt. While it might seem like you can melt anything and everything, the fact is that there are certain precious metals that are not approved to be melted. These include: – Silver coinsCopper coinsGold coins

Is It Illegal to Melt Silver Coins?

Now it’s time to find out if it’s legal to melt silver coins in your home mint or business. To find out the answer to this question, you need to find out what authority enforces the law on melting silver coins.

In Canada: No person shall melt down, break up, or use other than as money any coin that is legal tender in Canada, according to the Currency Act and the Canadian Criminal Code. Therefore, it is prohibited to melt silver coins.

In the USA: It is currently prohibited to melt down silver U.S. coins; however, coin pressing, jewelry making, and other creative endeavours are permitted. In essence, it’s fine if you’re not making money off it. Additionally, carrying more than $5 worth of pennies and nickels when traveling outside of the United States is prohibited.

When Have Melting Coins Been a Popular Tradition in the Past?

There have been a few other instances, besides the silver price explosion of 1979–1980, where people have routinely melted down coins to extract their metals. Nickel’s price saw a significant increase in 2011, which prompted people to melt down American coins with high nickel content. This is a major factor in why the United States passed legislation outlawing the melting of pennies and nickels.

In the past, the rate at which coins are melted directly correlated with the value of the metal used to make the coins.

Concluding Words

Consider seeking professional advice or conducting your own research before taking the decision of melting bullion coins.