Find out if you’re owed money simply by searching your name
State’s Unclaimed Property Division has $1 billion in assets, could some of it belong to you?
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - There might be money with your name on it sitting in a vault in Montgomery. “We have unclaimed property from 1971 going forward, it never goes away, we hold it in perpetuity,” said Mike Myers, Director, Unclaimed Property Division, Alabama State Treasury.
There’s more than $1 billion in assets housed by Unclaimed Property, said Myers, who oversees disbursement of these belongings, ranging from safety deposit boxes to insurance payouts, to their rightful owners.
“Each year, there’s an annual reporting from all of the businesses that do business in Alabama. That is happening actually at the end of October, so it’s an annual filing for each one of the businesses, that have those properties that are coming to the state,” said Myers. “Then we take those monies, post those, to the system, then we start advertising.”
Myers said this has been the busiest year for the division.
“It’s a record year for Unclaimed Property, and probably the economy has got a lot to drive that, but we’ve paid out $43,282,000 – over 17,500 claims, roughly. That’s banner years for payout money as well as claims, so people are looking for those additional funds.”
To find whether you have any unclaimed property, go to alabama.findyourunclaimedproperty.com. Then search your name and if you find it, start a claim.
“Then it’s a walkthrough process of verifying your identification, possibly matching addresses so we can match to you, and we in-turn send out the check once we can get those documentation,” explained Myers.
It takes about 4-6 weeks for the money or items to be dispersed, whether it’s from a closed bank account or old safety deposit box.
Myers says because space is limited in the vault, some items are auctioned and the money is saved for the owner. Unique or sentimental items, like military medals, pictures, or a baseball signed by Babe Ruth, are saved.
Payouts range from a few cents, to a few millions.
“This past month was probably one of the larger payouts. We paid a company a little over $2.5 million they had here. The largest I have ever done, it was a heir estate claim and we located a grandchild who didn’t know he was a beneficiary to a policy, and it was right short of $1 million and had no idea,” said Myers.
Myers says if you check now and don’t see your name, look back in a few weeks. He said they will be updating the database between November and Christmas with year’s filings.
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