Unclaimed Funds and Abandoned Property
Government trustees are holding over $50 billion in unclaimed funds and missing money. These forgotten funds were handed over by banks, life insurance companies, stockbrokers, courts, employers, utilities and public companies in compliance with unclaimed property statutes, whereby financial assets are considered abandoned when contact with the owner is lost.
This often occurs due to a name change after marriage or divorce, an unreported address change or the expiration of a postal forwarding order, because of incomplete or illegible records, and most commonly after an untimely death. Family members are often unaware they’re eligible to collect unclaimed moneys, refunds and benefits owed deceased relatives who passed on without an updated will. A large number of life insurance policies and retirement accounts go unclaimed because it’s up to heirs to notify insurance companies and pension plan administrators of death.
When owners or heirs fail to timely claim forgotten money, it is transferred to a trust account in a process known as escheat. Here these assets await your claim, along with billions of dollars in unredeemed U.S. Savings Bonds, undelivered IRS tax refunds, uncashed Social Security checks, forgotten pensions and unclaimed veterans benefits owed by government agencies themselves.