The Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts (TCPA) is responsible for administering the Texas Unclaimed Property Program. Property is turned over to the Comptroller's office annually when the owner's whereabouts are unknown and the property has been inactive on the books of the reporting company after the appropriate abandonment period has expired.
The claim form includes instructions for its completion and describes documentation needed in addition to the form. All claim types have general requirements such as:
Please complete, sign and return the claim form with a copy of your identification even if you are unable to provide all requested documents. In some cases TCPA is able to determine ownership based on the available information you are able to provide.
When TCPA receives your completed claim form, TCPA reviews it carefully. If there is not sufficient proof of ownership, TCPA may contact you or the reporting institution for further information. TCPA generally processes and pays claims within 3 to 4 months of receipt. Claims that involve minerals, stocks, estates or other complex issues may take longer.
No, the Comptroller's office acts only as custodian for the missing owners, holding the property in trust until it is claimed. Texas never takes legal ownership of the property, so there is no time limit for filing a claim.
There is no charge for the inquiry process. If your claim is approved, a handling fee is deducted by TCPA from the amount returned to you. For claims of $100 or more, the fee is 1.5 percent. Claims less than $100 are not assessed a fee.
Texas law limits the fee charged by all search firms or private investigators that assist owners in locating and claiming abandoned property to no more than 10 percent of the amount recovered.
Title 6 of the Texas Property Code governs the State of Texas Unclaimed Property Program.
Chapters 72 through 75 apply to the reporting, delivery and claims process for abandoned property.Chapter 76 applies only to unclaimed property held and reported by Texas counties, municipalities, independent school districts and junior colleges.
Unclaimed money come from many sources. Much of it – about 10% – is from insurance, e.g. someone had life insurance the heirs don‘t know about, or the policy changed after people moved, and the insurance company didn‘t find them. Most of the money is small amounts from old bank accounts.
Unclaimed Property is any financial asset that has been abandoned by the owner for one or more years. Some examples of property that can become abandoned are:
Treasuries of every state deal with unclaimed property passed on to them by the “property holder” organization. Information here can refer to both properties held by government and non-government organizations, so if the state procedure yields no results it is a good idea to contact the organization directly.
Please, check the ‘Property Holder’ column. Have you ever dealt with the organization listed there? Have you lived in that state?
If you have reason to believe that you are the rightful owner of the property listed here you have to find out if you can claim the property under question, and if it’s worth the effort.
All states maintain free-to-access registries of unclaimed properties.