Unclaimed Money from the Government

There are many cases of unclaimed money from different government programs, grants, and refunds. Basically, unclaimed money is owned by citizens who failed to claim the funds bestowed or returned to them.

Most cases of unclaimed money are caused when the agency or bank responsible for distributing this money cannot find the recipient and/or is no longer residing at the address written on the recipient’s personal information.
Can I Still Claim?
Certain money is considered unclaimed or dormant when the recipient has not yet claimed the money for a specific period of time or known as the dormancy period. Most states in the USA wait up to five years for it to be declared unclaimed.

When this happens the money is returned to the government’s ownership, but when the recipient does intend to claim the money beyond this period, s/he needs to file a claim.
How Can I Claim the Unclaimed money?
There are various sources of unclaimed money, it could be either of the following:

• From your state;
• From your current or the previous employer;
• From insurance companies;
• From tax refunds; and
• From banking or investments.
From your local state:
If you are not sure if you have unclaimed money from your state, you can follow the options below:

•Visit your local state office responsible for unclaimed properties and/or money; or 
• You can find your abandoned claim via the missing money website.
From your employers:
If you happen to have unclaimed wages and/or pensions from an employer who you can no longer find or contact him/her, you can do the following:

• Head straight to the US Department of Labor (DOL) for assistance and help on how to claim your money;
• You can visit the DOL’s database to check owed wages by simply putting the name of your employer.
• If you’re a retiree and have an unclaimed pension, visit the website.
From insurance companies:
If you have unclaimed funds or refunds from an insurance company or mortgage, you can visit the following sites to locate them to be instructed to claim them:

• https://insurance.va.gov/UnclaimedFunds; or
• https://entp.hud.gov/dsrs/refunds/.
From tax refunds:
Internal Revenue Service (IRS) site is responsible for locating and checking if you have unclaimed refunds. It is advisable that you search and follow the guidelines on how to claim your tax return.
From banking and investments:
There are several cases of unclaimed money from banking institutions and investment companies. Mainly this is caused by any of the following:

• Bank failures;
• Credit Union failures; and
• Unlocated recipients.

Although cases of unclaimed funds or money are prevalent in banking institutions, it is advisable that recipients claim what is owed to them. You can find unclaimed money by visiting the banking institution where your unclaimed money is held, but if you cannot contact or locate the institution, you can visit and ask for assistance from the following websites:

• www.closedbanks.fdic.gov/funds/;
• www.ncua.gov/support-services/conservatorships-liquidations/unclaimed-deposits;
• www.sec.gov/enforce/information-for-harmed-investors; or
• www.treasuryhunt.gov

Note that the process of claiming back abandoned funds/money can take arduous work and long days of waiting. It is best to always check for available claims before the dormancy period ends to avoid unintended paperwork.
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