State Treasurer’s office gives Lauderdale Co. residents the opportunity to reclaim money from unclaimed property
MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - The State Treasury of Mississippi’s office was in Meridian hosting an unclaimed property event Tuesday to give residents the opportunity to reclaim money turned over to the state.
Lauderdale County partnered with the State Treasurer’s Office to help return unclaimed property to its rightful owners. Unclaimed property is any financial asset that has been abandoned or unclaimed by the rightful owner. After five years, the property is handed over to the State Treasurer’s Office.
“A lot of people don’t realize that when you have an abandoned bank account, or their financial institution can’t find you, or let’s say you have a utility deposit you never cashed or a tax check you never cashed. Well, it ends up back in the state. Every state has an unclaimed property department. In our case, we only deal with cash. So what we do is we have a staff of about eight people and that’s all we do is we try to return as much money as possible that has been reported to us by financial institutions as unclaimed,” said Director of Unclaimed Property Lee Youngblood.
Youngblood said about every 1 in 10 people in the state of Mississippi are on their list for unclaimed property.
“Usually when we do this, we end up finding probably two, $300,000 worth of claims that are ultimately payable. There’s between $5 million and $6 million in unclaimed money that is associated with Lauderdale County that’s claimable still even after we’ve given back about a million over the last two years. So hey it’s a great job to have to be able to reunite people with their money,” said Youngblood.
Youngblood said since David McRae took over as the state’s treasurer in 2020 they have returned around $70 million worth of unclaimed property to Mississippians.
“It gives back to the economy of the local community. Whether it’s here in Meridian, Tate county, Vicksburg, Pearl, or Brandon. It helps the local communities. We’ve had over 100 people come here today and get money and put it in their pockets and they’ll go spend it wherever they live which is here in Lauderdale County, primarily in Meridian. They’ll give back to the community. It’s just overall that awareness. That ability to tell people that they have money, they should come and get it and they should spend it how they want,” said Mississippi Treasurer David McRae.
Youngblood said many people don’t realize they have unclaimed property out there. So if you get a call from the treasurer’s office he said it’s not a scam they are just looking to return rightfully owned money to you or your loved ones.
You can always check if you have unclaimed property on the State Treasure’s office at https://treasury.ms.gov/
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