According to a recent article in the AARP Bulletin, there are at least $33 billion of unclaimed funds sitting in state and federal treasuries. This “unclaimed property” comes from inactive bank accounts, uncollected insurance claims, uncashed paychecks and dividend checks. By law, when a financial institution or other company cannot reunite the owner (or his heirs) with his money, the company must turn the funds over to the government of the state in which the account owner last resided.

You can click here to easily try and locate unclaimed funds. In addition, if you have lost a savings bond, but have a record of its serial number, you can check here to get a status report for the savings bond in question.

It's a good idea to check for unclaimed property in every state where you have ever lived. Be sure to check maiden names and the names of deceased family members. The search is relatively quick and easy to perform on your own, so be very skeptical of private companies that ask for an up front fee to conduct a search, or collect a claim, on your behalf.

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