Record $1 billion in unclaimed property returned to Floridians; another billion still up for grabs

Personal Finance

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The state of Florida has returned a record $1 billion in unclaimed property to residents since 2017, and $1 billion is sitting in state vaults, waiting to be claimed, Florida’s CFO Jimmy Patronis announced Monday.

The announcement comes as more Floridians make claims for unclaimed property due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led to significant cuts to services and permanent layoffs.

“I am thrilled to announce that since I became your CFO, we have returned $1 billion back to Floridians in unclaimed property. Today’s news is especially important as many individuals and businesses are looking for financial relief due to the impacts of COVID-19,” Patronis said. “Special thanks to the Division of Unclaimed Property for working extremely hard to hit this record, even during these challenging times. I will continue working every day to ensure every cent of the more than $2 billion in unclaimed property is returned back to the pockets of Floridians.”

Unclaimed property is money and other assets that are unknown or lost, left inactive, unclaimed or abandoned by its owner. They are typically turned over to the government after a specific period of time has passed.

Most of the funds are from dormant bank accounts, unclaimed insurance proceeds, stocks, dividends, uncashed checks, deposits, credit balances and refunds.

Patronis said an estimated one in five Floridians has unclaimed property waiting to be claimed, free-of-charge.

“I’m encouraging all individuals and businesses to search now at FLTreasureHunt.gov and help us return another $1 billion,” he added.

The Florida Department of Financial Services has a database of unclaimed money on their website.

To check if you have unclaimed property:

  1. Go to www.fltreasurehunt.gov and enter in your information.
  2. Fill out and sign your claim form. You must provide a copy of your current identification reflecting your current mailing address and documentation proving your ownership of the account. Be sure to read carefully.
  3. Mail the completed claim form with the required documentation to the address indicated on the form.

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