Did you know you could have unclaimed money just sitting and waiting for you? Not long ago a friend saw my name in a local newspaper stating the State of Louisiana had unclaimed money for me.  I immediately researched the situation and found out I was owed $34 from a credit card overpayment that was never credited to my account. Cha Ching!

More than $30 Billion in unclaimed funds exist nationwide. A recent survey found that on average 1 out of 4 people have unclaimed money being held. By taking proper steps, you can claim funds owed to you.

By law, unclaimed money is turned over to the state treasury. While the money remains untouched, in most cases no notice is ever given to the rightful owners.  Below are the most common unclaimed funds according to www.frugalzeitgeist.com

-Forgotten Apartment Security Deposits - Landlords are required to hand forgotten security deposits to the state treasury where they wait until claimed.

-Failed Bank Accounts – If your bank went under and you didn’t get your money there’s a chance the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp is holding the money for you. Check the FDIC website to find out.

-Federal Tax Refunds – If you weren’t required to file taxes because you didn’t earn enough in a particular year, there’s a chance a tax return is still waiting to be claimed by you. An estimated $1 billion is waiting for people in tax returns from 2007 that expires this year! Check out irs.gov for more information.

-Unclaimed Savings Bonds – Because it takes so long for savings bonds to mature, it’s easy to forget about them. Check out the U.S. treasury’s website to help people find unclaimed savings bonds by typing in your social security number.

-Other Sources - Un-cashed Overtime Checks, 401Ks and misplaced pensions.  

 Make sure to check every state you’ve ever lived in and under each name you’ve ever legally used (if you’ve been married, etc). Find out if you have unclaimed money and you can then start the appropriate steps to reclaim it.  You might get even luckier than I did.