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Free Missouri Unclaimed Money Lookup
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Learn more about unclaimed money in Missouri with our comprehensive 2023 guide. Discover what it is and how you can claim your unclaimed money in Missouri.
If you live in the Midwestern state of Missouri, you might have heard of unclaimed money or unclaimed property in the area. You might even be wondering if you have any unclaimed property and whether or not you can still claim them.
Generally speaking, unclaimed property refers to money and other assets that have been more or less abandoned. Aside from cash, the unclaimed property can also refer to bonds, stocks, and any contents of safety deposit boxes. Additionally, they can also refer to government refunds, uncollected proceeds from insurance policies, wages from previous employment, etc.
Simply put, unclaimed properties refer to assets that owners have forgotten about or lost track of. For example, if your account hasn’t had any activity in a while, it may also be categorized as unclaimed money. In fact, there is approximately more than 58 billion dollars’ worth of unclaimed properties in the US. As such, it might be worth checking if you have any unclaimed properties.
So, how do these assets become unclaimed properties in the first place?
These assets can be classified as unclaimed property if the financial institution handling them can no longer contact the original owners after a legally defined period. This defined period is also called the “dormancy” period.
The duration of the dormancy period varies from state to state; it can be as short as one year or as long as five years. Nevertheless, after the dormancy period has passed, the state’s escheatment laws kick in.
These escheatment laws require financial institutions to turn over these unclaimed assets to the state, who will then take over the task of record-keeping and returning these properties to their owners.
Depending on the state, reclaiming unclaimed property can only be done within a certain period. After this, some states, like California, sell the unclaimed asset in a public sale, giving it to the highest bidder.
So, how does unclaimed money work in Missouri?
In Missouri, the legally defined dormancy period is typically around five years. However, this can vary, depending on the type of property. Nevertheless, once the defined dormancy period is over, Missouri’s escheatment laws kick in.
This means institutions like banks, businesses, public agencies, and insurance companies are required to turn over these assets to the State Treasurer’s office as unclaimed property. Generally, escheatment keeps these assets or their cash value for a certain period, after which the state liquidates them to keep the proceeds from the sale.
However, in Missouri, the State Treasurer’s office keeps these in trust forever. They will occasionally auction valuable non-monetary assets, like those from safety deposit boxes, if they run out of space to store them.
The only exceptions to this are military medals or honors that were turned over to the state as unclaimed property. However, any proceeds from these auctions will be kept by the State Treasurer’s office for an indefinite period.
This means they keep the proceeds until the original owners or their heirs can claim them. This means you don’t have to worry about deadlines when claiming your unclaimed property in Missouri.
As we have previously mentioned, there are specific dormancy periods for each state, after which your asset will be considered abandoned. In Missouri, this is generally around five years, but the exact duration varies with each type of asset.
For example, bank accounts, checks, demutualization proceeds, and gift certificates follow the five-year dormancy period. Insurance policies, whether they are life or annuity, can also remain dormant for up to five years before being reported as abandoned.
On the other hand, the dormancy period for money orders can be as long as seven years. Traveler’s checks have a dormancy period of around fifteen years before being classified as unclaimed property.
For any properties owned by public agencies or courts, the time limit is only three years. Additionally, any distributable asset by businesses is only allowed to remain unclaimed for two years before being reported as abandoned.
Missouri’s State Treasurer is responsible for handling and returning any unclaimed money in the state. The average unclaimed property in Missouri amounts to millions annually.
Currently, the Missouri State Treasurer’s Office holds over 1 billion dollars’ worth of unclaimed property, with around 1,000 of it coming from safety deposit boxes. The average claim in Missouri is about 300 USD, although it can be lower or higher than that.
Missouri state laws indicate that if the unclaimed property is worth 50 USD or more, the financial institution handling the said property should attempt to find the owner before turning it over to the state.
They need to send a letter to the owner’s last known address, giving them details such as the amount due and a request for confirmation of the account. Financial institutions can also use other means to contact the owner.
The Missouri State Treasurer’s Office strives to create more awareness about these unclaimed properties. They often send out postcards or advertise about unclaimed properties in the local newspaper to reach out to the owners.
However, if you don’t receive one or didn’t see your name in the newspaper, there’s a way you can search for your unclaimed properties. The easiest way to find if you have unclaimed money in Missouri is by looking through their official database. You can find this at the State Treasurer’s website.
On the website, you’ll find a text box on the right where you can input your name to check if you have any unclaimed properties in Missouri. They use a last name-first name format, but you can also search for your last name only. Doing so can help you see if your relatives have any unclaimed money as well.
Once you’ve typed in your name, you need to click on the small magnifying glass to generate a list of results. You can also simply hit Enter on your keyboard, and it will take you to the list of results.
Here, you’ll see several pieces of information, such as the name of the owner, property ID, and city. In addition to these, their database also provides the owners’ last known address when it’s available.
Additionally, any amount that goes beyond 50 USD is simply listed as “over $50” so they can avoid receiving false claims.
Once you find a claim you think is yours, you can choose the “Select” button on the left. Doing so will add the claim to your list. All of your selected claims will appear in red underneath the results, as you can see in the image below.
After you’re done adding the claims to your list, you can opt to either send the results to your email by clicking on the “Email Search Results” or start the reclaiming process by clicking on “File a Claim.” If you choose to file a claim, it will take you to the next page, wherein you need to fill in the details to start the process.
As you can see, some of the data they need will be your relationship to the original owner, your birth year, the last four digits of your Social Security Number, among others. Aside from these, the state may require additional documentation as proof of your ownership.
The entire process of filing a claim is paperless and can be done 24/7, making it easy to reclaim your property in case it is turned over to the state.
Aside from the Missouri State Treasurer’s official website, you can use other sources to search for unclaimed property in the Show-Me state.
For example, one way you can look for unclaimed property in Missouri is through the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators’ official website. The NAUPA is an organization that deals with reuniting unclaimed properties to their rightful owners.
Their jurisdiction covers all 50 US states, along with the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, Kenya, and several provinces in Canada.
Searching for unclaimed property on their website can be particularly helpful if you’re looking for properties in multiple states at once. If you’re looking through numerous states, you can check Missing Money for any unclaimed money in Missouri and other states.
On the site, you can click on the Search option, which will take you to a page where you can input your details, like your name, city, and state, and check if you have any unclaimed money.
If you’re looking for unclaimed properties in multiple states, you can just leave the province/state option blank. The list of results will show you the original owners’ name, where the amount is held, the last address, and the amount. However, you should note that not every state participates in this, so the list indicated here may be incomplete.
Therefore, if you want to check if you have unclaimed properties in a state not listed on the website, you can always check that individual state’s State Treasurer Office’s official website.
Only the original owners can claim their assets in Missouri once they are turned over to the state as unclaimed property. Suppose you’re the original owner of unclaimed money in Missouri. In that case, all you need to do after filing a claim is to provide some proof of identification, like a government-issued ID.
If the original owner is deceased, their legal heirs can reclaim the unclaimed assets, provided they have the documentation to prove they are related to the original owners. If filing a claim for a deceased next of kin, the process may be more complicated.
Aside from keeping the unclaimed property in trust forever, another benefit of having unclaimed money in Missouri is that reclaiming it is entirely free of charge. While you can hire third-party companies to help you out, they will often ask a percentage of whatever you get from the state.
With that said, Missouri doesn’t charge interest or fees when you file a claim, so you can get the total amount if you file the claim yourself.
Since the Missouri State Treasurer’s office keep all unclaimed properties in trust forever, you don’t have to worry about running out of time to reclaim any abandoned asset. Additionally, you can even receive the interest of your unclaimed interest-bearing property if you claim it within seven years after being reported as abandoned.
Any business entity operating in Missouri must file reports of any property presumed to be abandoned or unclaimed to the State Treasurer. These entities include businesses, banks, credit unions, retailers, insurance companies, and more.
However, before an asset can be declared as abandoned, the asset’s holder should first attempt to locate and connect with the original owners. As mentioned, this is typically in the form of a letter and sent to the owner’s last known or currently listed address.
After this and the holder receives no confirmation from the owner, they can report the account or assets as unclaimed or abandoned. These reports are made to Missouri’s State Treasurer before November 1st of each year and cover up to June 30th of the same year.
However, the cutoff is different for life insurance companies which must submit these reports to the State Treasurer by May 1st of each year, covering a period up to December 31st of the previous year.
For these reports, they need to identify the type of property, who its owner was, as well as indicate the dates of when the last transactions were and when the amount became payable. Aside from reporting to the State Treasurer, these businesses must also maintain these records up to five years after reporting the assets as unclaimed property.
On the other hand, if the properties have a seven-year dormancy period, they need to keep these records for up to twelve years after making the initial report.
Should these businesses fail to report abandoned properties to the State Treasurer, they can be subjected to penalty fees. The penalty for not reporting abandoned properties is typically five percent of the total value. However, the penalty fee cannot reach more than 10,000 USD.
Suppose you have any assets with financial institutions like banks or even policies with insurance companies. In that case, you might be wondering how you can prevent them from being reported as abandoned and becoming unclaimed property.
There are several ways you can prevent this from happening, some of which we’ll be detailing below.
One way you can ensure that your money or assets aren’t reported as abandoned is by ensuring that all your information is always up-to-date. This means you should always notify any business or financial institutions if you undergo any name or address changes, especially if you get married or divorced.
This also includes ensuring your previous employer has accurate information about your address. Otherwise, your account may be considered lost, particularly if any mail they send is returned to them as undeliverable.
Businesses do their due diligence before turning the assets over to the state, so it’s best if they can easily reach you. Additionally, it can be difficult for you to reclaim your property if they’re unaware of the changes.
Another way to prevent your assets from becoming flagged as lost or abandoned is by keeping tabs on your assets. Make sure to list every asset in your name, like savings, checking, investments, insurance policies, etc., and ensure that all records are accurate and updated.
Doing so will help you keep track of your assets, preventing them from becoming forgotten and tagged as abandoned. It’s also best if your family knows where to find these records in case something unexpected happens, and they need to claim the assets on your behalf.
This is another way you can prevent your account from being flagged as abandoned. Making a manual transaction once a year for every account can show your financial institution that the account is still active and that you haven’t abandoned it.
In Missouri, the usual dormancy period is five years, so it’s best that you don’t let any of your accounts stay dormant for more than that period.
Suppose you have several accounts under one holder. In that case, it may be best to consolidate them, so you can have a more manageable time keeping track of them. This will also make it easier for you to make transactions and keep the accounts active.
The overall duration of the process can vary from case to case. Still, the State Treasurer’s office s strives to expedite the claiming process. As such, they process claims as soon as possible, after receiving the necessary documents for verification of the claim.
There may be times when you find an unclaimed property under your parent’s or elderly relative’s name. In that case, you can fill out the form online and indicate your relationship with the original owner.
The process for retrieving unclaimed property is a little different for relatives, and the documentation needed may vary, depending on the property type.
Yes, you can. Suppose you don’t want to reclaim your property. In that case, you can choose to donate it to charities and organizations specified by the Missouri State Treasurer’s office. You can find a list of the approved charities here.
The process for donating your unclaimed property is similar to reclaiming it. You need to search the online database for your asset, file a claim, verify your information, then choose to donate all or just a part to any of the charities listed on the Missouri State Treasurer’s website.
Unclaimed properties are not subjected to local taxation as long as they are still filed as unclaimed. However, they can be recognized as taxable income once they are reclaimed by their original owners.
Regardless of how organized you are, there may be times when some information about your assets falls through the cracks, resulting in them being classified as abandoned or unclaimed properties. These assets may be bank accounts you forgot you have or undelivered paychecks from previous employers.
Whatever these assets are, it’s always a good idea to check if you have unclaimed money in Missouri by checking the State Treasurer’s local database. With the state policy keeping your unclaimed property in trust forever, you don’t have to worry about running out of time to claim your unclaimed money.
Hopefully, our guide was able to help you understand more about unclaimed money in Missouri and learn more about searching for and filing a claim.
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