BOSTON -- State Treasurer Steven Grossman has released the latest tally of names that have been added over the last six months to Massachusetts' list of owners of unclaimed property. More than 347,000 new properties in excess of $90 million combined are owed to individuals and businesses in the Commonwealth.
"The magnitude of the holdings of the Treasury's Unclaimed Property Division is apparent when you consider that this list only represents names that have been added over the past six months," said Grossman. "Altogether, we are holding over $2 billion in cash and other property, and we are working aggressively every day to ensure that more of that money goes back to its rightful owners."
Unclaimed property includes forgotten savings and checking accounts, un-cashed checks, insurance policy proceeds, stocks, dividends, and contents of unattended safe deposit boxes. Most accounts are considered "abandoned" and turned over to the Treasury after three years with no activity.
The new list of names of individuals and businesses from Berkshire County will be published in The Berkshire Eagle on Wednesday, March 20. To determine if they have unclaimed property, citizens can call 888-344-MASS or visit www.findmassmoney.com.
Unique to this year's release is the inclusion of over $40 million owed to thousands of beneficiaries of unclaimed insurance policies that were uncovered in a Treasury-initiated audit of multiple life insurance companies. Because of the audit, these life insurance companies have agreed to change their practices to better identify beneficiaries upon the passing of the policy holder.
The newly released list includes 83 accounts of more than $100,000; 99 accounts of between $50,000 and $100,000; and 16,893 accounts in excess of $1,000. The list encompasses only individuals and businesses with shares of stock or mutual funds or unclaimed property over $100 and does not include any owners identified before September 2012.
Grossman said one in 10 people in Massachusetts has unclaimed property in their name.
The Treasury releases an updated list of unclaimed assets every six months as new accounts are turned over to the Commonwealth. There is no time limit to claim this property and, in many cases, claimants will receive interest.