How to transfer assets out of a Schwab account 

How to transfer assets out of a Schwab account 

Account transfers between two financial institutions are processed electronically using the Automated Customer Account Transfer (ACAT) system or manually (Non-ACAT), depending on the transfer type, and can be full or partial. During the transfer process, assets may be unavailable for trading, liquidating or meeting cash needs. To determine the most appropriate time to transfer assets, speak with your client(s) Tooltip .

To initiate a transfer of assets out of a Schwab account, your client should contact the receiving firm, which determines the required documents and procedures, and contacts Schwab to begin the process. A full transfer out will be charged $50.

All Asset Transfers
  • An account at the receiving firm to accept the assets
  • Your client's asset handling instructions (in kind or liquidate). If the account transfer is partial, the exact list of assets being transferred is required.
  • Margin, options, trades and pledged assets status
  • Assets confirmed to be acceptable for direct transfer to avoid delays (assets not acceptable for direct transfer must be liquidated or remain in the Schwab account).
  • A conference call with the plan administrator and the account holder(s) for the disbursing account to initiate the transfer (typically for qualified plan rollovers)
  • If the accounts are not like registered Tooltip , additional documentation may be required on a case by case basis.
  • Schwab requires an IRA Distribution Form if transferring funds from an IRA account to a non-IRA account.
  • Example: John Doe IRA to John Doe Individual, or John Doe Individual to John and Jane Doe, Joint Tenant.
  • Schwab requires a Letter of Acceptance for Non-ACAT IRA transfers. The document must be provided by the receiving firm and indicate the assets will be accepted into a like-registered IRA. The letter varies by firm.
  • Example: John Doe IRA to John Doe IRA or John & Jane Doe Joint Tenant to John & Jane Doe Joint Tenant
Transfer Type How it works
ACAT (Automated Customer Account Transfer)
  • Transfer is submitted electronically by the receiving firm
  • Transfers in kind assets, typically between National Securities Clearing Corporation (NSCC) member firms
  • Account registrations between sending and receiving firms usually match (e.g., joint to joint, trust to trust)
Non-ACAT
  • Transfer is processed after receiving paperwork from the receiving firm
  • Transfer to a non-NSCC member firm, usually a non-brokerage firm such as a:
    • Bank
    • Credit Union
    • Mutual fund company
    • Trust company
    • Life insurance company
    • Annuity company
*Non-ACAT transfers may be delivered using a variety of different methods including DTC transfers, check, or wire transfers.
  • The account holder, trustee, authorized agent or Durable Power of Attorney (DPOA) may request a transfer out of Schwab.
    • A Full Power of Attorney (FPOA) is not authorized to transfer assets outside of Schwab.
  • Participants of Company Retirement Accounts (CRA)/Pension trusts must obtain the signature of one of the account trustees.
  • Only one signature is required for all transfers out of Schwab (except for Tenants in Common accounts which require all tenants' signatures) or unless otherwise indicated on the account.
  • A Medallion stamp from the receiving firm is required if the client signs the outgoing transfer form with an electronic signature.
    • Electronic signatures are not acceptable for liquidation requests. Schwab requires a physical signature, or the assets can be traded by your client or through advisor channels.

Schwab account holders can make contributions to charities directly from their Schwab brokerage account using a Charitable Gift Transfer Letter of Authorization or by setting up a donor-advised fund account with Schwab Charitable Tooltip ™.

For more information, see How to make charitable donations or How to donate through Schwab Charitable™.

  • Receiving firm's paperwork requests to liquidate the client's asset(s) but instructions are unclear. 
  • Transfer form is not signed, dated, or missing a medallion stamp for electronically signed forms.
  •  Any restrictions on a client's account may delay the transfer.
  • Transfer form is not in good order and missing delivery instructions.

Once all the required information is received, asset delivery initiates. Outgoing ACAT transfers take 3-5 business days. Non-ACAT transfers can take 1-4 business days from the date the transfer is approved by the delivering firm, depending on the method of delivery.

IRA Distribution Form
Charitable Gift Transfer Letter of Authorization

How to transfer assets to a Schwab account
Introduction to Schwab CharitableTM
How to donate through Schwab CharitableTM
How to make charitable donations