Unclaimed property is increasing throughout the U.S., and many are unaware of where to find it. In a recent statement from the U.S. Supreme Court (Texas vs. New Jersey, 379 US 674, 1965), the unclaimed property is returned to the state of the property owner’s last known address. If the address cannot be found, then it is returned to the state in which the business holding the funds is incorporated.
It is the responsibility of the unclaimed property office to find the rightful owners, by placing advertisements in newspapers and trying to trace the owners. It has been observed that most states only advertise the new additions in their list. The good part is that there is no time limit on claiming your property.
You might expect the following information being sought from the office of unclaimed property:
Your name (including your maiden or former names)
Your Social Security number, and current address
All previous addresses where you lived while in the state
They will want the same information about any other individual for whom you’re the legal beneficiary
The Social Security Administration also keeps records about people who qualify for certain pension benefits. When you apply for Social Security benefits, they automatically check your name and Social Security Number against the pension records database and will inform you if there are any matches.
The unclaimed property vault is at an all time high and the state treasury officials, as well as the federal decision makers, are leaving no stone unturned to locate the actual owners of these unclaimed assets. If you are trying to find unclaimed property, now is the best time to do that.
State and Federal agencies have ensured that all the unclaimed assets are in safe hands and can be claimed at any point of time. As compared to the earlier years, both federal and state governments have simplified the claim process to a great extent. Currently, every media avenue is being tapped by the state and federal agencies, and they have shown the proactive stance towards providing all the logistical and information-based help to the claimants.
Some of the major tools for unclaimed property search that can be utilized by people who are in search of unclaimed funds are:
A] If you had an old FHA mortgage paid off before November 5, 1990, you may be due a refund. For more information, call the FHA Support Service Center at 1-800-697-6967, see the HUD Get A Refund search engine on the HUD site, or write to HUD, Distributive Shares Branch, PO Box 23699, Washington, DC 20026. Questions about refunds may be emailed to email@example.com.
B] The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation maintains a list of 12,000 people who are owed approximately $27 million in unclaimed pension benefits. The PBGC database can be searched by name, company name, or state. Use the Pension Search box.
Unclaimed funds in Banks, savings Bonds or Pension funds
For funds which are lost in unclaimed bank accounts, the best place to start will be the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s Web site at www.fdic.gov.
In case of savings bonds, the most trusted source of identification and procurement will be the record-keeping office of the U.S Treasury. If you or your relatives might have a pension which is still unclaimed, then it can be tracked down at PBGC at search.pbgc.gov/mp/.