While digging into an issue surrounding identity theft, I came across a link to check for unclaimed property with my state. I followed it up and a few minutes later I discovered – to my surprise – that I had $ 200 worth of properties to claim. I am not alone. The number of unclaimed properties in the US is significant. In 2019, the average claim paid was $ 1,780, according to the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators. California is holding about 57 million unclaimed properties worth about $ 10.2 billion, according to the state’s website, and has returned $ 258 million worth of unclaimed items in 2020. New York has even more unclaimed funds, retaining $ 16.5 billion in lost or forgotten properties; the state returned $ 126 million worth of properties last year.
We explain why your state may hold money or other financial assets for you, how to check if you can make a claim, and how to get money back for a deceased family member. Here’s what you need to know for more ways the government might owe you money, seven for 2020 it is extensive for maximum and what we know
Why would my state keep my money or property at all?
Governments or companies send unclaimed property or money to a state-run unclaimed property office if they cannot find the owner. The state office keeps these items until the owner claims them.
With most states, it is easy to find out if you have unclaimed property. And even better, for free. However, claiming can be more work depending on what documents you need to collect and then send to the state to prove that you are the rightful owner.
How to check for unclaimed money and property with a state
To find out if a state owns your financial assets that you should claim, the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators lists official websites where you can search for unclaimed properties by state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the American virgin islands. .
1. Go to Unclaimed.org and tap Select your state or province or tap your state on the map. You will be sent to the state unclaimed property page.
2. The next, enter your detailsThe page may ask you for your first and last name, middle initial and city. Your last name is probably required, but you can try to use or skip the suggested fields to refine or broaden the results.
You can also search 39 states at once using the Missing Money website, which is endorsed by the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators. However, the search function is missing 11 states: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Kansas, Oregon, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Washington, and Wyoming.
If your search in either utility reveals that a state owns property of yours, it’s time to claim it.
How to Claim Your Missing Money
If your search results show that a state owns some of your money or property, you can file a claim to get it back. Each state handles claims a little differently. Some allow you to submit your claim online, while others require you to submit documentation to support your claim. Some of the documents you may need to provide include:
- A copy of your photo ID
- A copy of your social security card or tax identification number
- Verification of your current address
- Documentation related to the type of property, such as bank details, a cashier’s check, or a certificate of stock
Can your state take your claimed money to pay a debt in arrears?
Depending on the state, your payment may be diverted to pay that debt if you have an outstanding debt with your state or local government. California, for example, allows the Franchise Tax Board to intercept unclaimed property funds – as well as state lottery money and a tax refund – to cover debts you owe to a state, county, or municipal agency.
How long does it take to get your money?
Don’t expect the claim to happen anytime soon. The New York State Comptroller’s office said it can take 90 days to process a claim. Florida’s Department of Financial Services also said it expects 90 days for the Division of Unclaimed Property to process a claim. The California State Controller’s office said it can take up to 180 days to return properties.
How to Claim Money on Behalf of a Deceased Family Member
States also allow you to claim property from a deceased relative, and the rules for filing a claim vary from state to state. In general, in addition to providing documents to verify your own identity, you must provide a death certificate, the will of the deceased and documents proving your relationship with the deceased and your right to claim ownership.
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