The Alaska Department of Revenue is sending out notices alerting holders of their obligations to file unclaimed property reports to the state in accordance with Alaska’s Uniform Unclaimed Property Act. These communications are targeted to those that filed unclaimed property reports and remitted property to Alaska in 2019 but did not in 2020. Due to the negative economic impact on states from COVID-19, Sovos’ consulting, reporting and regulatory teams have been preparing for increased unclaimed property compliance enforcement efforts to shore up struggling state budgets.
Negative Unclaimed Property Reports
Alaska does not require the submission of a compliance report confirming you checked your records and have nothing to report for the period – often called a negative unclaimed property report. However, a negative unclaimed property report is required in a number of other states for holders who filed unclaimed property with that state before but do not have property to remit in the current year. Even if not required, a negative unclaimed property report is best practice as it shows ongoing compliance with the state’s unclaimed property laws. Within the communication, Alaska notes that the notice should be disregarded if the holder does not have any unclaimed property to report for the recent reporting period.
Penalties and Interest
Alaska’s Uniform Unclaimed Property Act includes language providing penalties and interest to be applied to late or improper reporting. Per the act, Alaska is permitted to charge 12% interest per year for unclaimed property that is not reported or delivered within their prescribed timelines. The act also provides for a penalty of 5% per 30-day period, up to a maximum of 25% of the property value, to be applied for late or incorrect reporting. Fortunately, Alaska’s law allows for waiver of penalties if sufficient proof is provided that the failure is due to reasonable cause.
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