The 2015 Unclaimed Property Report is hot off the press and ready to be distributed in Nebraska's 16 daily newspapers, beginning Sunday, March 8, in the Omaha World-Herald and the Scottsbluff Star-Herald, State Treasurer Don Stenberg said today.
The 44-page publication lists more than 40,000 names that were added to the Treasurer's unclaimed property database in 2014 and represents almost $17 million that was turned over to the state in the past year, Stenberg said. In all, the Treasurer’s Office is holding about $135 million for 350,000 owners.
“Our database is constantly being updated, so I urge Nebraskans to check the annual report in their weekend newspapers and check online at treasurer.nebraska.gov The search is well worth the time and effort. Many people are surprised at what they find and are grateful for the service,” Stenberg said. He emphasized the Treasurer’s Office does not charge for the service, the names in the tabloid represent only a fraction of all the names in the database, and property is held for owners forever.
The 2015 annual report will be published, as required by State Statute, in the following newspapers:
So far this year, more than $1.1 million has been paid out in unclaimed property claims to more than 1,000 owners. A total of more than $11.7 million in unclaimed property was returned 16,592 owners last year, the largest amount returned to owners in a single year since 2009. The ten largest properties in the 2015 report range from $80,000 to almost $600,000 and are identified in the report by name and the owner’s last-known county of residence. Those counties are Adams, Custer, Douglas, Hall, and Webster.
As president of the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators (NAUPA), Stenberg is involved in providing research and recommendations to the Uniform Law Commission, which is in the process of updating the Model Uniform Unclaimed Property Act. The act serves as a guide for unclaimed property programs nationwide and was last revised in 1995. Nebraska’s unclaimed property statutes were enacted into law in 1969.
“While NAUPA maintains that the existing Uniform Unclaimed Property Act is sound, NAUPA believes the act could be improved upon, particularly with respect to emerging payment methods, new property types, and advances in technology,” Stenberg said. “The association believes it is critically important to preserve the fundamental consumer protection underpinnings of the unclaimed property law.”
Stenberg thanked the Nebraskans featured in the 2015 annual report for sharing their stories and invited others who may be interested in telling their stories in the future to contact the State Treasurer’s Office Communications Director at 402-471-8884.
“As we have done in the past four years, we have continued our practice of featuring Nebraskans who received unclaimed property through our office and who were willing to share their experiences in the hopes of encouraging others to initiate their own searches,” Stenberg said. “We are happy to see owners reunited with their money and to know that we played a role in making that happen.”
Nebraskans and people with ties to Nebraska can search for unclaimed property any time at treasurer.nebraska.gov . Type a name in the search box in the center of the homepage. Try variations of the name.
Readers are encouraged to search the tabloid publication for their own names as well as the names of relatives, businesses, and friends. They are also encouraged to search variations of their names. Each name is listed by last-known county of residence. A separate section is devoted to names for which no addresses were provided to the State of Nebraska.
Additional ways to search and file claims include the following: