Demystifying The Dematerialization of Physical Shares

how to demat physical shares


Dematerialization, or demat, is the process of converting physical shares into electronic format. This transition has become increasingly popular due to its convenience, efficiency, and reduced risk of loss or damage. In this article, we will explore the steps involved in dematerialize physical shares and highlight the benefits of embracing this digital transformation.

Understanding Dematerialization 

Dematerialization involves the conversion of physical share certificates into electronic form. Traditionally, investors held physical certificates to prove ownership of shares. However, with the advent of demat accounts, these physical certificates can be converted into digital records. Dematerialized shares are held in electronic form, making them easier to trade, transfer, and monitor. The process of dematerialization is regulated by central securities depositories and stock exchanges, ensuring the security and authenticity of the electronic records.

Steps to Dematerialize Physical Shares 

  • Open a Demat Account The first step in dematerializing physical shares is to open a demat account with a registered depository participant (DP). Choose a reliable DP that is a member of a recognized depository. Submit the required documents, such as a filled application form, identity proof, address proof, and relevant agreements, to complete the account opening process.
  • Submit Share Certificates Once the demat account is opened, you need to submit the physical share certificates to your DP for dematerialization. Ensure that you have a list of all the shares you want to dematerialize and cross-verify it with the DP to avoid any discrepancies.
  • Consolidation and Verification The DP will consolidate the share certificates and initiate the verification process. This involves ensuring that the certificates are valid, genuine, and match the details provided. Once the verification is complete, the DP will dispatch the certificates to the respective companies for dematerialization.
  • Dematerialization The companies will update their records and confirm the dematerialization of the shares to the depository. The shares will be credited to your demat account, and you will receive an electronic statement confirming the same. This process typically takes around 15 to 30 days, depending on various factors such as the efficiency of the company and the depository.
  • Monitor and Trade Electronically After the dematerialization process, you can monitor your shareholdings electronically through your demat account. You can also trade or transfer the shares conveniently using online trading platforms or by giving instructions to your DP.

Benefits of Dematerialization

Dematerialization offers several advantages over physical shares. Firstly, it eliminates the risk of theft, loss, or damage associated with physical certificates. Digital records are secure and cannot be destroyed easily. Secondly, dematerialized shares can be traded and transferred electronically, providing greater liquidity and faster settlement. Thirdly, maintaining electronic records reduces paperwork, making it more convenient and eco-friendly.

Moreover, dematerialization provides easy access to historical transactions, dividends, and corporate actions, enabling better portfolio management. It also eliminates the need for share transfers through physical forms, reducing the turnaround time and costs associated with the process.


Can we dematerialize physical shares?

Converting physical shares into demat form is called the dematerialisation of shares. Shares traded in the stock market and companies listed in depositories can also be dematerialised. The physical shares can be dematerialised if they have a company name and face value.

What are the charges for Dematerialisation of physical shares?

Converting physical shares can cost close to Rs 150 to Rs 400 per share certificate and the whole process can be executed with the help of online portals as well. According to SEBI guidelines, the conversion process must be completed within 21 days, however, for some companies, it may take longer.

How can I convert paper shares to demat in 2023?

  • Request a demat of shares Request Form from your DP (DRF). 
  • Complete the DRF with all necessary information and sign it. Send your DP the properly filled out form and your actual share certificates. Each physical share certificate must state “Surrendered for Dematerialization.”


Dematerialization has revolutionized the stock market by eliminating the need for physical shares and embracing the digital era. By following the steps outlined in this article, investors can seamlessly convert their physical share certificates into electronic format and enjoy the benefits of convenience, efficiency, and reduced risks. Demat accounts offer increased security, liquidity, and better control over investments. It is advisable for investors to explore dematerialization and take advantage of this modern and streamlined approach to share ownership.

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