Owner-Reunification Efforts Get Political (In a Good Way)
On Friday, we mentioned that Massachusetts recently published its 50 largest items that were reported to the state in the past year. Today, we bring word from the Bay State of a first-of-its-kind (I think) owner-reunification effort started by the Treasurer’s office. According to an article on wickedlocal.com, the Treasurer’s office is providing members of the state legislature with contact information for constituents that have cash accounts greater than $500 being held as abandoned property. This is, frankly, an ingenuous idea, harnessing the legislators’ desire to serve their districts (read: get reelected) to assist with the process of reuniting citizens with their unclaimed funds.
It is also a relatively low-cost method of owner-outreach. For the price of a few hundred CDs, containing information that was already compiled, the Treasury department can use the state legislators and their staffs as agents to assist (or at least publicize) the Treasury’s efforts to return unclaimed property. There are many stories about states doing little, or nothing, to return unclaimed funds. It’s nice to see that Massachusetts is making an unique effort to fulfill the unclaimed property department’s lesser known function.