Annually, millions of dollars in unclaimed property are turned over to the treasurer’s office when companies are unable to locate the lost owners. To date, the state treasurer’s office is holding over $294 million for over one million accounts. Treasurer Fitzgerald would like Iowans to learn how to keep their assets from becoming unclaimed property. Common forms of unclaimed property include savings or checking accounts, stocks, uncashed checks, life insurance policies, utility security deposits and safe deposit box contents. Listed below are tips to help keep property from becoming lost in the future.
- Keep accurate, written and regularly updated financial records and store them in a safe location.
- List all bank accounts, safe deposit box numbers, stock certificates, insurance policies and other deposits with your other financial records.
- Promptly use gift cards and cash or deposit all checks, money orders and other similar financial instruments.
- Do not let savings and other accounts remain idle. Be sure to complete a transaction periodically to keep the account active.
- Respond to requests from financial institutions or companies for confirmation of account ownership.
- If you move or your name changes make sure to notify every institution you do business with of your new address or name.
- Prepare, file and regularly update a will listing the disposition of your assets after death. Make sure someone has a copy.