Did you know that state and federal governments have billions of dollars of forgotten or abandoned assets? There are unclaimed assets from estate liquidation sales, wills, bankruptcies, left behind paychecks, forgotten tax refunds and abandoned savings accounts that recipients either forget about or don’t even know exist.
So whether you know of your unclaimed assets or don’t know where to look, keep reading to learn how to conduct a lost money search and find unclaimed funds that belong to you.
An unclaimed asset is any valuable item, such as an amount of money or property, that belongs to you, but you cannot or do not receive it for a variety of reasons.
It may not seem possible that you have unclaimed money, unclaimed property and other assets out there. But there are billions of dollars in assets that remain unclaimed every year. But here are some common ways that assets become unclaimed:
- Clerical error.
- Lost in the mail.
- Change of name, such as changing a last name after getting married, for professional reasons or other reasons.
- Frequent relocation or change of address, such as being in the military or having traveling contract work.
- Forgotten active bank or savings accounts.
- Forgotten safe deposit box.
There are many other specific situations in which someone may have unclaimed assets they don’t realize they have. For example, the owner of a financial lending services business may have unclaimed assets from clients who default on their loans and file bankruptcy.
If you have bankruptcy-related unclaimed assets, federal courts hold onto those funds until you file a claim for them. The U.S. Department of the Treasury may also hold onto bankruptcy funds, too.
You can conduct a search for unclaimed money from federal agencies to find these funds and file a claim. Every state keeps records of all unclaimed assets and property that belong to residents in the state’s treasury department or lost property office.
You can use your name, all your previous addresses, complete work history and bank account information to search the records.
You can use a multi-site search database to more efficiently search for unclaimed assets across many states, which may be an important step if you’ve lived in more than one state. If you find unclaimed assets that belong to you, you can file an official state-specific claim with that state’s treasury department or other applicable office.
You’ll learn more about how to find unclaimed assets on another slide. Keep reading to find out more.