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Barnitz asks 16th District residents to check state unclaimed property list
Barnitz asks 16th District residents to check state unclaimed property list

State Sen. Frank Barnitz
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (March 16, 2009) — With the legislature adjourned this week for the mid-session recess, I wanted to take this time to let you know how you might be able to find money or property that is rightfully yours. The Missouri State Treasurer’s office is required by law to collect and maintain property and funds that are unclaimed by Missourians. These items are turned in by financial institutions, businesses, government agencies, and other organizations. The state holds more than $550 million in unclaimed assets, and some of this could belong to you.

One in every 10 Missourians has assets being held by the Unclaimed Property Division. Property is turned over to the state for a variety of situations. For example, there have been instances when an individual switched banks and left some money in a savings account or valuables (stocks, bonds, jewelry, etc.) in a safe deposit box. Or, perhaps a citizen was owed some money by an insurance company or even by the government, but the individual couldn’t be located. Other types of unclaimed property include utility deposits and wages from past jobs.

After five years, property is turned over to the treasurer’s office where it is held until the rightful owners come forward. Tangible property held by the state is periodically sold to maintain storage room, though the proceeds from the sale of the items are made available for claiming. The state never takes ownership of unclaimed assets, no matter how long property is in the state’s possession.

The fastest and most efficient way to check to see if you have unclaimed property is to visit www.treasurer.mo.gov and to click on the Unclaimed Property link, which is here: www.treasurer.mo.gov/mainucp.asp. You can also write to Missouri State Treasurer's Office, Unclaimed Property Division, P.O. Box 1004, Jefferson City, MO 65102. When writing, include a list of possible owner names, addresses and previous addresses (if known). If you find that you have unclaimed property, you will need to prove your identity or the fact that you are an heir to the original owner of the property. You’ll receive a response to your claim within 90 days.

Missourians have discovered thousands of dollars and family heirlooms by simply making a quick inquiry. The Unclaimed Property Division is in existence to help you find property that belongs to you, and I encourage you to utilize this resource.
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If you would like to start receiving my column regularly, please visit my website at www.senate.mo.gov/barnitz and click the “Sign Up to Receive My E-Newsletter” link located under Constituent Services. 

As always, I appreciate hearing your comments, opinions, and concerns. Please feel free to call me in Jefferson City at (573) 751-2108. You can also write to the address listed below:

Capitol Office 
State Capitol Building
Room 427
Jefferson City, MO 65101 

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