If You Think California Authorities are Working Hard to Find Owners of Unclaimed Money & Unclaimed Property, Think Again, so says the California Legislative Analyst’s Office in a New Report.
Often, when Heir Hunters International initially contacts someone entitled to unclaimed property or unclaimed money, the person will hesitate, saying: “If I delay, surely, eventually, the holder of the property I am entitled to will contact me.”
Our response has always been a rather emphatic, “No.” “Your delay,” we warn, “could result in your losing–forever–your ownership rights.”
And now Heir Hunters International can point to a February 10, 2015, investigative report by the non-partisan California Legislative Analyst’s Office to support our admonition. As reported on the website, Allgov.com, in a piece entitled, “State Doesn’t Try Too Hard to Locate Owners of $7.2 Billion in Unclaimed Property,” reporter Ken Broder aptly explains why:
“The fifth-largest source of revenue for California’s General Fund are found objects that don’t really belong to the state.” And, “the $400 million in annual revenues is acting as a powerful disincentive for the state to do more” to locate the rightful owners of unclaimed money and unclaimed property.
To be fair, the California State Controller’s Office, the agency responsible for managing California’s unclaimed property and unclaimed money, faces a daunting task. There are a staggering “28.4 million unclaimed properties, valued at $7.2 Billion” in California alone. And, each year, those figures grow as the State aggressively pursues institutions holding unclaimed money and unclaimed property, of whatever source, such as bank accounts, insurance policies, stocks, securities, expiring gift certificates and cards, safe deposit boxes, etc., to turn them over to the State Controller under threat of an independent audit and resulting substantial fine for non-compliance.
In more precise terms, the report’s authors note, “Since the 1950s, [California] has reunited about $4 with owners for every $10 it escheats on average.” The reasons that 60% of unclaimed money and unclaimed property eventually makes its way into the State General Fund vary, but, include, “poor information reported to the state, outdated owner contact information, and the difficulty inherent in reuniting property with the heirs of deceased owners.”
This is where Heir Hunters International comes into play. Our staff takes on the hard cases; i.e., those 60% or more which the State authorities are incapable of solving. You can presume that when Heir Hunters International contacts you, it has already expended considerable time, effort and financial resources locating you and establishing your right to unclaimed money and unclaimed property. Heir Hunters International is not hard sell, and, as we explain, you are encouraged to review our documentation at your leisure, and, if you wish, with your attorney. But, in light of this new report by the California Legislative Analyst’s Office, you are wise to remember, Time is of the Essence!