July 9, 2009

More Than $550 Million is Waiting to be Claimed

JEFFERSON CITY ­ With Missouri still facing extraordinary economic times, State Treasurer Clint Zweifel is a launching a statewide campaign to connect the public with Missouri’s Largest Lost and Found, its Unclaimed Property Division (http://www. showmemoney.com).

Treasurer Zweifel is teaming up with newspapers across the state on a campaign that will utilize more than 110 newspapers to list 80,000 names of Missourians who have had property turned over to the state over the past year. Most of the property is checks and insurance proceeds, but it can include trading cards, antique dolls and clothes. If you see your name and former or present address listed in a local newspaper, you have unclaimed property waiting to be retrieved.

“We want to give these items back to their owners, and there has never been a better time to do so,” Treasurer Zweifel said. “The claims process is completely free of charge and my office works to expedite the process in order to return property to the owners as quickly as possible.”

The State Treasurer’s Unclaimed Property Division holds abandoned assets from bank accounts, stocks, bonds, insurance policy proceeds, government refunds, utility deposits, wages from past jobs and contents of safe deposit boxes. This property is turned over to the state by financial institutions, insurance companies, public agencies and other business entities if there has been no documented transaction or contact with the owner for five or more years. Currently there is more than $550 million in more than 3.5 million accounts being held by the division.

“On average, we are able to return $350 to each account owner, and one in 10 Missourians has unclaimed property,” Treasurer Zweifel said. “In some cases we have returned hundreds of thousands to account owners, and this year’s efforts will allow us to return property to more owners this year than ever before.”

The State Treasurer’s Office has already returned $25.4 million in fiscal year 2009.

In addition to printing names in newspapers, Treasurer Zweifel’s 14-person Unclaimed Property staff helps return unclaimed property by sending postcards to those with unclaimed property and runs www.ShowMeMoney.com , which is the fastest way for Missourians to find out if they have assets waiting to be claimed. You can write to Missouri State Treasurer’s Office - Unclaimed Property Division, P.O. Box 1004, Jefferson City, MO 65102 and include your name, address, and any previous addresses.

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