How to Find Unclaimed Money Held By State Governments

Each state is currently holding hundreds of millions of dollars in unclaimed properties, ranging from money left in forgotten bank accounts to unclaimed life insurance settlements and refunds. If any of these funds belong to you, you have the right to claim them. The challenge -- and it's not much of a challenge -- is to find them.

Step 1

Open the locator map provided by the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators (find a link in the References section.) Check the unclaimed money listings for any state or Canadian province you have lived in.

Step 2

From there you will be able to enter your name, and/or the name of ancestors to which you are an heir.

Step 3

If you find that you are owed any of the unclaimed property, the site will direct you to that state or province's responsible office, which will provide you with a simple form to fill out and mail in. You may have to prove your past residency with an old utility bill or an old tax form, and you may need to provide a Social Security number as a proof of identity. Processing usually takes about six weeks.