Every State has a method for individuals to search if they have any unclaimed property that has been reported to the State Controller’s Office or Treasury Office. People are often surprised at how much unclaimed property there is, especially when they search their name and find that something is waiting for them to claim. Nowadays in most States you can easily search your name online to see if there is a windfall with your name on it. Start with Google, and search for “unclaimed property” followed by the name of your State to find a link to the government entity that keeps those records.
A savvy investigator (or stalker) may also try to locate records of unclaimed property in your name. When a record is found, the listing will have your name and address associated it. And now you can see why I have chosen to write about this topic. There are many ways to locate an address for someone online, and this is just one more method that may compromise your location or a previous address you used. If you find yourself while searching unclaimed property there are two things you need to consider.
1. Should I claim the money that is owed to me?
2. Is there a way to remove my name and address from the State’s website?
Only you can decide if the amount of money you are owed is worth claiming. If you look into the requirements of how to claim your unclaimed money or property, you will see why this would make someone with privacy concerns pause. The requirements to claim your money are lengthy, very specific, and a lot of documentation is needed to prove you are who you say you are. Government issued ID, a second form of ID, utility bills, a physical address that can be verified with another document in your name, etc, etc. It is a lengthy list of requirements and in my scenario, I decided it wasn’t worth the effort and invasion of my personal information. I do not know for sure if the info you provide would ever be sold and/or populated elsewhere…but I suspect there’s a good change of that happening.
Now, what if you choose not to claim your property? Can you remove your name and address from appearing on the State’s website when someone searches and finds your unclaimed property listing? I am happy to report that you most likely can.