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BOSTON – The Massachusetts Treasury said this month that it identified hundreds of thousands of new individuals, charities and businesses over the last six months alone that are entitled to more than $80 million in unclaimed property. As part of an effort to return this money, the treasury will be publishing in newspapers a list of names identified over the past six months owed more than $100.
Unclaimed property includes forgotten savings and checking accounts, uncashed checks, insurance-policy proceeds, stocks, dividends and contents of unattended safe-deposit boxes. Most accounts are considered “unclaimed” and turned over to the treasury for safekeeping after three years with no activity. In addition to the $80 million that the Treasury identified over the last six months, the commonwealth is holding over $2 billion in trust until rightful owners can be identified.
The newly released list will include 15 accounts over $100,000, 49 accounts between $50,000 and $100,000, and 6,404 accounts in excess of $1,000. The treasury urged residents to check a more comprehensive list at www.findmassmoney.com.
The list will not include individuals identified in the last six months who are owed less than $100 or those whose claims are being processed.
In fiscal 2011, nearly $76 million in unclaimed property was returned to Massachusetts citizens, businesses and charities, a 28 percent increase over the prior fiscal year. •