CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The West Virginia State Treasurer’s office returned more than 1.3 million in unclaimed property to West Virginia residents in August.
State Treasurer Riley Moore says the Unclaimed Property Division paid out 979 claims last month that totaled $1,386,258. He says this is higher than the average of $1.1 million paid out during the month of August for the last six years.
“This is the people’s money and we’re constantly working to return it to them,” Moore said. “I encourage everyone to visit our website – www.wvtreasury.com – today to see if we’re holding anything in your name.”
The treasurer’s office says each fiscal year, it pays out an average of $15 million in unclaimed property. According to Moore’s office, unclaimed property can include “financial accounts or items of value in which the owner has not initiated any activity for one year or longer.” This can include items such as unpaid life insurance benefits, forgotten bank accounts or unused rebate cards.
Moore says his office is working to find new ways to educate people about what unclaimed property is and how individuals can find out if they have unclaimed property in their name.
“In addition to the Unclaimed Property Bulletin newspaper insert that we will be running during October, we are increasing the amount we spend on digital advertising to help raise the profile of this program,” Moore said. “We want to make it as easy as possible for our residents to find and claim any funds that may be out there in their name.”
Across the nation, an estimated 33 million people are estimated to have unclaimed property they can claim, Moore’s office says. In the Mountain State, unclaimed property laws are in place to ensure money and property owed to an individual is returned to them.
West Virginians who want to know if they have unclaimed property can visit the state treasurer’s website and click on the Unclaimed Property “Search” button that can be found under the heading, “Are We Holding Your Money?” The site can also help West Virginians track a claim.