Did you know that you might have unclaimed property waiting for you in Michigan? Unclaimed property includes dormant bank accounts, uncashed checks, insurance proceeds, utility deposits, valuables left in safe deposit boxes, stock certificates, and more.
Michigan's Unclaimed Property Program:
Under Michigan's Uniform Unclaimed Property Act, Public Act 29 of 1995, Michigan businesses and government entities are required to report and remit any abandoned and unclaimed property they hold that belongs to:
- Owners whose last known address is in Michigan
- Owners whose last address is unknown
The Unclaimed Property Program, administered by the Michigan Department of Treasury ("Treasury"), holds millions of dollars in lost or forgotten assets. These assets were turned over to the state as required by law after being deemed abandoned. The department acts as the custodian of these assets, reuniting them with their owners or heirs when rightfully claimed. Whether you are an individual, business owner, or family member, this program holds the key to rediscovering your assets.
What is Unclaimed Property?
Unclaimed property refers to cash and other valuable items that have been reported to Treasury because they have remained unclaimed by their rightful owner for a specific period of dormancy. Unclaimed property can take various forms, including:
Bank Accounts: This includes both checking and savings accounts that have had no owner activity for an extended period.
Certificates of Deposit (CD): Unclaimed CDs are those that have reached maturity or have gone unredeemed by the owner.
Overpayments: Refunds or credits issued by businesses that were not collected by the intended recipient.
Insurance Checks: Insurance companies may issue payments that remain unclaimed.
Payroll Checks: Unclaimed paychecks or wages that have not been collected by employees.
Refund Checks: Unclaimed refunds issued by utility companies, memberships, or other entities.
Money Orders: Uncashed money orders that have not been received by the payee.
Uncashed Checks: Any type of check, including dividend checks, that has not been cashed or deposited by the recipient.
Dividends: Unclaimed distributions from investments or company profits.
Stocks and Bonds: Unclaimed shares of stock or bond certificates.
Contents of Safe Deposit Boxes: Abandoned or unclaimed items left in safe deposit boxes.
When is Property Considered Abandoned?
Michigan law establishes "dormant periods" for different types of property. Property is considered "abandoned" at the expiration of an applicable dormant period. The period starts with the last time the property owner had any contact with the holder and during which the owner takes no other actions related to the property.
- Most unclaimed property in Michigan has a three (3) year dormant period, including:
- Checking and savings accounts
- Cashier's, certified and registered checks
- Customer overpayments and refunds due
- Contents of safe deposit boxes
- Security deposits
- Escrow funds
- Insurance policy benefits or payments
- A shorter, one-year dormant period applies to unclaimed wages, salary, payroll, and commissions.
How Can You Determine If You Have Unclaimed Property?
To find out if you have cash or property waiting for you, visit the Michigan Unclaimed Property website (https://unclaimedproperty.michigan.gov/) or call the Unclaimed Property Hotline (517) 636-5320 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m., Monday through Friday. The site offers enhanced search options and an easy and secure process to upload verifying documentation. For individuals living outside of Michigan, you can check multiple states' unclaimed property listings at www.UCPday.com.
Search Today - No Cost Involved: You should search using your name, your maiden name, and/or the name of your business or nonprofit. If you find property that belongs to you, you can file a claim online or by mail. Claiming unclaimed property is a simple process, and there are no fees involved. You will need to provide some basic information about yourself, such as your name, address, and Social Security number. You may also need to provide documentation to prove that you are the rightful owner of the property.
Once you have filed a claim, Treasury will review your paperwork and process your claim. If your claim is approved, you will be paid the value of the property.
How Long Does it Take to Process an Unclaimed Property Claim?
Claims are processed in the order they are received. The processing time depends on the complexity of the claim. In general, simple claims can be processed within a few weeks, while more complex claims may take several months. Some factors that can affect the processing time of an unclaimed property claim include:
- The type of property being claimed: Some types of property, such as stocks or bonds, may require additional verification before they can be released.
- The amount of the claim: Larger claims may require more time to process.
- The completeness of the claim information: Claims that are missing important information, such as the claimant's Social Security number, may take longer to process.
Let's Reunite You with Your Assets
Don't wait any longer if you believe you may have unclaimed property in Michigan. Take action today to recover what's rightfully yours. The Michigan Unclaimed Property Program is a great way to find money and property that you may have forgotten about. If you haven't checked the program in a while, we encourage you to do so. You might be pleasantly surprised at what you find!