February is National Unclaimed Property Month
Harrisburg, PA - Treasurer Stacy Garrity announced today, the first day of National Unclaimed Property Month, that the Pennsylvania Treasury returned more than $211 million in unclaimed property in 2022. Treasury also returned 90 military decorations and memorabilia to veterans or their families.
“National Unclaimed Property Month is the perfect time to highlight the fact that Treasury is working to return more than $4 billion in unclaimed property to the people it rightfully belongs to. We’ve made several valuable improvements to our unclaimed property system recently to help people get their money back faster than ever – including adding direct deposit in November. I encourage everyone to visit our website today to see if any unclaimed property is waiting to be returned to you or your family.”
Pennsylvania State Treasurer, Stacy Garrity
To search Treasury’s unclaimed property database, visit patreasury.gov/unclaimed-property.
The $211.3 million in unclaimed property returned in 2022 is the most returned in a calendar year since 2018, and the third most over the last 16 years.
In 2022, Treasurer Garrity started an initiative to return unclaimed property to local government agencies. To date, Treasury has returned more than $7 million to counties and municipalities.
Treasurer Garrity also returned 90 military decorations and memorabilia in 2022, including two Bronze Stars and two Purple Hearts. Notable returns in 2022 include the return of a Bronze Star to the family of the late Frank Musto, a World War II veteran from Allegheny County; the return of a Bronze Star, a Purple Heart and other decorations to the family of the late Robert Cook, Jr., a World War II veteran from Allegheny County; and the return of a collection of medals and ribbons belonging to the late Timothy Marahoris, a Korean War veteran from Harrisburg whose church accepted his decorations after Treasury found no close living relatives.
People are encouraged to search Treasury’s dedicated military database at patreasury.gov/unclaimed-property/medals to see if they or their family have military items waiting to be claimed.
Unclaimed property can include dormant bank accounts, abandoned stocks, uncashed checks, and more. Property is always available for the rightful owner to claim. Tangible property – often the contents of forgotten safe deposit boxes – may be auctioned after three years, but proceeds remain available to claim in perpetuity. Military decorations and memorabilia – often turned over to Treasury from abandoned or forgotten safe deposit boxes – are never auctioned and remain in the vault for safekeeping until a veteran or their family is found.
More than $4 billion in unclaimed property is currently waiting to be claimed. One in ten Pennsylvanians is owed unclaimed property, and the average claim is worth about $1,600.
To prevent your money from becoming unclaimed property:
- Inform financial institutions of any address changes.
- Communicate with financial institutions at least once every three years.
- Keep up-to-date records of bank accounts, stocks, insurance policies, safe deposit boxes, and all other financial information.
- Tell a family member or trusted advisor where you keep your financial records.
- Cash all checks as you receive them.