To help you maintain your financial records and to prevent property from being reported as unclaimed:
• Scan or take a photo of one account statement for each business account as well as your pay stub from your employer(s). By keeping this information in electronic form, consumers easily can access it should they ever need to provide proof of residency, employment, etc.
• Keep accurate and current records — electronically or in hard copy — of bank accounts, insurance policies, stock certificates, utility and rent deposits, and safe-deposit box locations.
• Whenever you move, notify every company you have a business relationship with of your new address.
• Cash all checks for wages, dividends, refunds and insurance settlements.
• Keep accounts active through customer-initiated contact with the holders of your property.
• Pay attention to unclaimed funds notice forms from a company that says your money might be turned over to the state for safekeeping due to inactivity in the account. To maintain control of this account, fill out the form and return it to the company within 30 days of the postmark so your property will not be reported as unclaimed.
Some of the most challenging claims for the Division of Unclaimed Funds to approve involve accounts in the name of deceased persons. To help your heir(s) receive the funds you intended:
• Notify your heir(s), estate attorney or financial planner of the location of your will and financial records.
• Consider consulting experts to assist you in estate and financial planning. This will help you handle your finances now and help facilitate the distribution of your assets after your death.
• If you have named someone as a beneficiary to a life insurance policy, consider whether you would like to make the beneficiary aware of the policy, including the life insurance company, amount of the policy, where it is stored, etc.
— Betty Lin-Fisher