If a pool mines a block and is mistakenly rewarding miners with less coins than they should be given, is it possible for others to recover those coins somehow? Or are they lost forever?

For example, if the reward should be 50 BTC and the pool pays everyone a total of 5 (because the script has a bug and everyone's payout is divided by 10), is it possible for the other 45 BTC to be recovered?

  • I can't imagine there could be a way to recover the coins after the fact. Actually, it could be that a block with such a mismatch would be considered invalid, and the other miners wouldn't build on top of it. In that case the original pool gets nothing at all. Commented Sep 16, 2013 at 15:28

1 Answer 1


No, the remainder of the reward is lost.

The bitcoin protocol includes a check which rejects a block that claims a bigger reward than 'current block reward + transaction fees'. Thus, inevitably follows that any rewards unclaimed in the coinbase transaction cannot be claimed at a later time.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.