During these challenging times, many Tennesseans can use some extra money. The Tennessee Department of Treasury Unclaimed Property Division returned over 59,000 claims, totaling $62.5 million, to the rightful owners during fiscal year 2020.
From July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020, about $62.5 million was returned by the Unclaimed Property Division to the owners or their heirs, local governments, and reciprocal states. While the ongoing pandemic has created one of our nation’s most financially difficult times, the Division has put money back into Tennesseans’ bank accounts, with nearly $20 million returned to 18,800 claimants during the months of March through June 2020.
“During these challenging times, as our employees have worked remotely, they have diligently continued our responsibility of getting money back into the hands of Tennesseans who have been living with the difficulties of this crisis,” State Treasurer David H. Lillard, Jr. said. “It has been rewarding to see millions of dollars put back into Tennesseans’ bank accounts during such a critical time.”
Unclaimed property is money that has been turned over to the State by businesses and organizations unable to locate the owners. This includes intangible assets such as utility or business refunds, unclaimed wages, credit balances for overpayments, gift certificates, securities, bank accounts, etc.
The Treasury Department utilizes various methods to locate owners of unclaimed property, including mailing letters to the address provided when the property was turned over from the business (holder), and sending letters to employers of potential claimants whose Social Security Number has been matched with records from the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development. On average, the Unclaimed Property Division sends hundreds of thousands of letters each year to potential claimants. If you have received a letter, you can verify the information by visiting ClaimItTN.gov.
Some third-party companies may send letters alerting individuals to unclaimed property. Beware of any service asking you to pay them to help you get your money back. If you are ever contacted about unclaimed property in Tennessee and would like to check the validity, go to ClaimItTN.gov.
To be sure your letter is legitimate, be aware:
• There is never a fee to claim unclaimed property in Tennessee.
• There is never a time limit on when you can claim your property.
Anyone can see if they are owed any missing money by searching their name at ClaimItTN.gov, and may file a claim online if they find unclaimed property belonging to them. The online database contains all unclaimed property in Tennessee dating to the beginning of the program. Treasury recommends searching for common misspellings of your name and addresses as well, as that may be why the business was unable to return the money to you initially. Our website also includes a link to help you search for missing money in other states.