Unclaimed Property: If You Lose Your Dog, Is It Still Yours?

Jennie Henderson
June 10, 2019

Of course it is!

A lost dog wandering the streets is fairly easy to identify as lost, and his location doesn’t change your ownership. You know that the lost and found box at the front desk is there to reunite you with something you misplaced, but how do you identify what is ‘abandoned’ or ‘unclaimed’ property?

Knowing is half the battle, but you NEED to know what it means so you can determine if you have it, and are therefore required by law to turn it over to its rightful owner.

In short, Unclaimed Property is anything that your business tried to give to someone else that they have not yet claimed. If you tried to give something to someone and they didn’t take it, it’s still theirs-not yours-and you have to make the effort to get it to them, or give it to the state so they can hold it for them until they claim it.

The most common unclaimed property types are uncashed payroll checks, customer refunds, uncashed insurance claims,  and bank accounts or safety deposit boxes that have gone untouched for a number of years. It can also include unused gift certificates, unused travelers checks, money orders, uncashed dividends, trust distributions, life insurance beneficiary checks, mature CDs, and more.

Unclaimed Property regulations vary by state and many business owners must report to more than one state, as abandoned or unclaimed property must be reported to the state of the property owner’s last known address. If you are unfamiliar with how unclaimed property works, or what your liability might be, contact a knowledgeable provider who can help you with your reporting needs to avoid costly legal issues down the road.

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Jennie Henderson

Jennie Henderson is an Account Manager in the unclaimed property department working with current clients to help increase their understanding of unclaimed property software and compliance. In her downtime, Jennie enjoys reading, crafting indoors or in her garden, baking, and catching the occasional fish.
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