Q:

What are the laws around unclaimed funds in New York?

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Quick Answer

Unclaimed funds laws in New York require banks, corporations, courts, insurance companies and many other organizations to report dormant accounts to the state comptroller, according to the Office of the New York State Comptroller. The dormancy period was reduced from five years to three years, effective April 1, 2011.

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Full Answer

The unclaimed funds laws are part of the New York State Abandoned Property Law. New York State Abandoned Property Law requires organizations to review their records each year. When an account reaches a certain dormancy threshold, it must be transferred to the state comptroller. The comptroller becomes the custodian of the funds until they can be returned to their rightful owners, explains the Office of the New York State Comptroller.

Some of the types of properties that must be transferred to the state comptroller are bail funds, trust funds, savings and retirement accounts, child support and spousal support payments, escrow funds and lost cash. The state comptroller's office provides specific reporting guidelines for dormant accounts, so all of the information can be compiled into one database. It also offers an electronic reporting program. Persons can search for, file claims and check claim status for lost money, unclaimed funds and dormant accounts on the New York State Comptroller website, according to the Office of the New York State Comptroller.

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