Federal Unclaimed Money
While you might not be aware of it, you could have a claim to Federal unclaimed money. Many people are never aware of the fact that they have a claim to money from the Federal government. Such claims can arise from a variety of different sources.
One of the most common sources of unclaimed Federal money is U.S. Savings bonds. It is actually surprisingly easy for these types of bonds to remain unclaimed due to the fact that they can take as long as 40 years to mature or stop earning interest. As a result, many people purchase them or forget about them. Unclaimed money from bonds can also arise when bonds are purchased for another individual as a gift and the recipient never learns of it. It was for this reason that the Treasury Department made the decision to establish a website where you can search for forgotten bonds. The website is www.treasuryhunt.org. Unlike some unclaimed money websites where you can search by name, in the Treasury Department website you will need a social security number to conduct a search.
When searching online for unclaimed bonds keep in mind that the website only has information for bonds that were purchased after 1974. Also, be aware of the fact that there are certain types of bonds that are not listed on the website at all and will require a hand search to be conducted. Conducting a search on the website is well worth the time. The Treasury Department has reported that each year 25,000 payments are returned to the Department as being undeliverable. Currently, there are billions of dollars in U.S. Savings Bonds that have matured and have not yet been cased. If you or a deceased family member owns a savings bond or a registered Treasury note, you may well have Federal unclaimed funds.
Another source of Federal unclaimed money is Federal tax refunds. While many people anxiously await the arrival of their tax refund each year, in some cases there are tax refunds that are never delivered. If you think you or a family member may have a tax refund you can go to the IRS website and search under the Where’s my Refund feature to search for missing refund checks. You will need to supply your name, the amount you are owed and your social security number.
You might also have Federal unclaimed money from the FDIC. The FDIC or Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation provides deposit insurance to banks and the depositors of banks or financial institutions. If a regulatory agency closes that bank or financial institution the FDIC becomes the receiver of payments for insured deposits and any remaining assets. You can search for unclaimed funds by going to the FDIC website at http://www2.fdic.gov/funds/index.asp. Unclaimed funds may also be waiting on you at the FDIC due to dividends that are declared on excess deposits that are over the insurance limit, dividends that are declared on general creditor claims and funds that are distributed to shareholders of a failed institution. Searches can be conducted by first and last name, first name only, last name only, check number, official item number or business name. You can also narrow your search to the name of the failed institution or city and state.
You could also have Federal unclaimed funds through a refund from FHA or HUD. This could be possible if you have a FHA backed mortgage. You could be eligible to receive a refund from part of your insurance premium on loans that were acquired after September 1, 1983 on mortgage insurance premiums that were paid upfront at the time of closing. To find out whether you are owed a refund, go to http://www.hud.gov/offices/hsg/comp/refunds/index.cfm to conduct a search.
The PBGC or Public Benefit Guaranty Corporation is another source of possible Federal unclaimed money. This organization is responsible for distributing funds from pension plans and 401K plans. To conduct a search go to www.pbgc.gov.