The Texas State Comptroller’s office reports that Nueces County residents currently have more than $28 million waiting to be claimed from the state’s Unclaimed Property database.
Nueces County Clerk Kara Sands is hosting a special event to help Nueces County residents get back what is rightfully theirs. Ms. Sands has partnered with Texas State Comptroller Glen Hager to host an Unclaimed Property Search Event from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 23, in the Nueces County Courthouse Honorable James E. Klager Central Jury Room, located at 901 Leopard St., in Corpus Christi.
What is unclaimed property?
The Texas unclaimed property law requires financial institutions, businesses and governmental entities to report to the state any personal property they are holding that has been abandoned or unclaimed for between one and five years, depending on the type of property in question.
Unclaimed property can come from:
dividend, payroll or cashier's checks; stocks, mutual fund accounts or bonds; utility deposits and other refunds; bank accounts and safe deposit box contents; insurance proceeds; mineral interest or royalty payments; court deposits, trust funds or escrow accounts; and overpayments on insurance, utility and other bills. Facts
Currently, there is about $4 billion in the unclaimed property program. Texas has more than 28 million properties waiting to be reunited with their owners. Since the program’s inception 53 years ago, the Comptroller’s office has returned more than $2 billion in unclaimed property to its rightful owners. In fiscal 2015, the Comptroller’s office paid more than $249 million in claims. The average claim is nearly $1,000 and has an estimated two properties. Texas law has no statute of limitations on unclaimed property; it always belongs to its owners or their legal heirs. Physical items (such as jewelry and coins) comprise a small percentage of the properties received by our office. We auction these items and hold the proceeds for the rightful owner. To view weekly auction items on eBay, please visit ClaimItTexas.org and look for the Notice of Auction tab on the right hand side of the screen. The most expensive item auctioned was a 10.2- carat diamond ring that went for $50,209. It takes about one minute to learn whether unclaimed property is listed in the database and only a few minutes to file a claim. Searches should be made at least once a year. Remember: unclaimed property can surface at any time. Texans who have lived in other states can search unclaimed.org or missingmoney.com for their unclaimed property. The largest claim ever paid by the state of Texas was from abandoned stock worth more than $12.5 million. If no additional information is needed, original owner claims will be processed within 30-45 days and general, business or claims over $5,000 will be processed in 60-90 days of receipt. Signed original owner claims may be approved if some of the required documentation is unavailable. Remember, property becomes lost due to a company having no communication with the owner. You should contact institutions that hold your money or property every year and especially when there is an address change or change in marital status. For security reasons, most financial institutions do not forward mail. Keep accurate financial records and record all insurance policies, bank account numbers with bank names and addresses, types of accounts, stock certificates, and rent and utility deposits.
The National Association of Unclaimed Property recommends the following to prevent property from becoming lost.
Cash all checks for dividends, wages, and insurance settlements without delay. Respond to requests for confirmation of account balances and stockholder proxies. If you have a safe deposit box, record its number, bank name and address, and give the extra key to a trusted person. Finally, prepare and file a will detailing the disposition of your assets. Texans without Internet access can use computers at local libraries to search their names at ClaimItTexas.org or call 1-800-654-FIND (3463). For additional information, please contact Nueces County Clerk Kara Sands (361) 888-0862.