NASHVILLE, TN (WKRN) – The Tennessee Department of Treasury has more than $720 million in unclaimed property. A quick web search can connect you with owed money.
Every year millions of dollars in uncashed checks, insurance benefits, stock pay-outs or even utility deposits are turned over to the Tennessee Department of Treasury because the rightful owners cannot be located.
The Division of Unclaimed Property then takes up the task of notifying the person who is entitled to the money or their heirs in case of death.
“There is no statute of limitation. You can claim it at any time,” Communications Director Shelli King said. “Our job is to get it back to where it belongs.”
Even though it is called unclaimed “property,” this is strictly money.
“In 2015, we returned more than $40 million, which was a dramatically increased number. We attribute to our website,” King said. “The people that believe it are very excited, but some people don’t believe it is real. We are taught to be suspicious we are afraid it is a scam.”
King warns there are websites that will charge a fee to check for unclaimed property.
This service is a free one guaranteed by the federal Consumer Protection Act.
“That is why I stress that you want to go to the Tennessee Treasury Department and ClaimItTN.gov,” King said. “It is very simple. You click claim and collect and you are ready to go.”
There is also a website for the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators at Unclaimed.org.
News 2 tracked down a man who had more than $250 in unclaimed property.
Daryle Wright did not know before we went to his Hendersonville home that he had money unclaimed.
News 2 verified through the Department of Treasury that he was the right person, and even though he did not tell us exactly how much he had, he told News 2 it was more than $250.
“I am amazed,” he said. “This is pretty amazing. This is pretty cool.”
He continued, “It was just some stocks with a company I used to work for its unpaid stocks.”
Wright heard about unclaimed property before but never thought he would have money waiting for him so he never checked.
“It would be well worth it because I am sure there are people out there like me that have worked for companies never knew or forgot they were getting a little stock share from their company,” he said. “It might not be a great deal of money, but any money is good money.”
It takes between six to eight weeks to get a check from the state.