If the government owes a person money and that person does not collect it, the money is considered unclaimed money. This may also happen with pensions, credit unions, banks and other companies. While there are legitimate sources of unclaimed money for some people, it is also important to be aware of scams relating to unclaimed funds. Many people pretend to be from the government or other companies claiming a person is owed money but must pay a fee to collect it. A government agency will never call about unclaimed money or ask for a fee to recover it. Every consumer should know how to look for unclaimed money and how to avoid scams.
Where To Find Unclaimed Money Online
There is no central site where all types of unclaimed funds are listed. To find different types of unclaimed money, a person must visit several sites. A name, social security number or state of residence may be required for the search.
Start by using a search engine to find state listings of unclaimed funds. Tax refunds and other tax money that is unclaimed can be found by contacting the IRS.
The United States Treasury Department, USA.gov and the FDIC are some good places to start when searching for federal funds. Most of these sites have search features where people can find their unclaimed money by entering a state of residence, a first name and a last name.
Pensions And Retirement
For any retirement accounts or pensions from companies that went out of business, try to find unclaimed funds by searching the company’s name and “unclaimed funds.” These may also be listed in other places. For help locating such funds, discuss concerns with an agent.
Banking And Investments
In some cases, banks fail and owe people money for their accounts. Some people forget they have accounts with these banks. Try searching the FDIC first for any funds from failed financial institutions. This is also the best place to start when searching for funds from a credit union. For any funds from SEC claims, try searching the Securities and Exchange Commission site first. There are typically lists that specify when one party owes another money. People who have mutilated coins and bills can exchange them with the Treasury Department under the damaged money provision.
A useful site for finding savings bonds that are no longer accruing interest is Treasury Hunt. If a bond was issued during 1974 or later and has matured, it should appear on this site. There are also resources for calculating the value of a savings bond and replacing stolen or lost paper bonds.
For any foreign claims, the Bureau of Fiscal Service provides a search tool to locate these funds. To learn more, discuss concerns with an agent.