The unclaimed property can be anything from forgotten savings or checking accounts to uncashed payroll checks, insurance or estate payouts, or refunds on utility deposits. One of the biggest infusions this year to the treasury was from the City of Des Moines, which turned over $11 million owed to 60,000 former and current residents of the capital city that were entitled to refunds of illegally charged franchise fees.
While the state has $316 million now — and 6.7 million stock shares owed to Iowans — the Great Iowa Treasure Hunt has returned more than $237.6 million and 3.1 million stock shares to 562,000 people since it was created in 1983.
It’s worth taking a look. After all, in 2015 an estate in Storm Lake that wasn’t aware it was due anything claimed the largest amount ever when the state returned $2.3 million.
Iowa is doing well as far as returning money, compared to some states that have billions — yes, with a B — in their coffers. New York is guarding a staggering $15 billion in money that its residents haven’t claimed, Texas holds $4 billion, Illinois is sitting on $2.9 billion, Massachusetts is hording $2.4 billion, and Florida’s stash is just more than $1 billion. North Carolina, on the lower end of the scale, still has double the pot of Iowa with $659 million.
Want to check whether you’re on the list of people owed money? Simply go to GreatIowaTreasureHunt.gov to search for your name and don’t forget to check for relatives. You could have a nice surprise waiting.