What is an Abandoned Property Report?
An Abandoned Property Report, or also referred to as an Abandoned or Unclaimed Property Report, is a legal document used to report all kinds of abandoned and unclaimed property owned by certain individuals.
A certain property will be considered abandoned or unclaimed if it has been dormant for several years. It will also be considered abandoned or unclaimed if it is an unused asset that has been turned over to the state after being neglected by its owner for a certain number of years. In the United States, state dormancy periods may normally range from 3 to 5 years for most property types. For salaries or wages, it will only take a year for them to be considered dormant.
Estate assets and abandoned or neglected properties may vary and can be both tangible and intangible. Unclaimed assets and abandoned properties may include real estate, land, and safe deposit boxes as well as insurance, unpaid wages, and securities held in financial accounts such as stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.
Other examples of abandoned or unclaimed properties may include, but are not limited to the following:
- Checks from commissions
- Checks from vendors
- Wages or salaries
- Checks from unclaimed refunds
- All types of dividends and securities
- Insurance policies
- Royalties from mining
- Bank accounts
- Customer credits
- Retirement accounts
- Employee benefits
- Cash rebates
- Money orders
- Traveler’s checks
To be able to reclaim or recover a certain individual’s abandoned or unclaimed property, he or she must contact abandoned property divisions in his or her current state and go through escheatment. Escheatment occurs whenever the government decides to take ownership of certain estate assets and abandoned or unclaimed property. This normally happens whenever a certain individual dies and has not prepared a will and has no assigned heirs. Furthermore, individuals may be granted escheat rights whenever estate assets and abandoned properties have been unclaimed for a long period of time.
In most cases in the United States, the estate assets or properties that have been abandoned and neglected can be auctioned or converted to cash for the sake of safekeeping convenience. Moreover, the estate assets and abandoned or unclaimed properties maintained by each state in the U.S. may be used to support each of their respective activities.
All companies, corporations, and business entities in the United States are required to report and remit all abandoned and unclaimed properties. These businesses are solely responsible for filling out and submitting reports on behalf of their respective departments, divisions, and other affiliated entities. The businesses are officially known as holders. Holders may include, but are not limited to the following:
- Banking and financial organizations
- State or federal chartered banks
- Trust companies
- Savings banks
- Private bankers
- Savings and loan associations
- Credit unions
- Investment companies
- Business associations located anywhere in the United States
- Joint stock companies
- Business trust
- Partnership corporations
- Cooperatives or other associations of two or more individuals for business purposes
- Profit and non-profit organizations
- Utilities owned or operated for public use
- Legal entities that may include state, county, city governments, political subdivisions, public authorities, public corporations, estates, and trusts
In the past, abandoned or unclaimed properties would be taken by the financial institution (FI) or other certain entities that currently possess it. This means that centralized channels did not yet exist to help citizens in the United States to recover any of their unclaimed assets. Furthermore, the estate assets and unclaimed properties of U.S. citizens have remained in the hands of certain parties with little to no incentives to locate their missing owners. Currently, having the U.S. abandoned property divisions take care of individuals’ unclaimed funds, assets, and properties has made it much easier for people to take back what is rightfully theirs.
In addition to this, the citizens of the United States have now accepted that any estate assets or abandoned funds or properties that remain unclaimed for a long period of time must be used for the benefit of the public. In cases wherein abandoned property divisions have to resort to escheatment, it will be much better to make use of abandoned properties, estate assets, or funds and have them go into public repositories instead of solely enriching individuals in the private sector.
How to fill out an Abandoned Property Report?
Abandoned or unclaimed property owners and their trustees in the United States can write their own Abandoned Property Report or download a PDF copy from a website that offers document templates. For convenience, they can also fill out the Abandoned Property Report electronically on PDFRun.
To fill out an Abandoned Property Report, you must provide the following information:
Name of District
Enter the name of the district you are currently residing in.
Name of State
Enter the name of your state.
Enter all of your properties that are either encumbered by liens in excess of its fair market value or are of such small value that the likely sale price would not be sufficient to defray the expense of appraisal and sale. Your properties must also be of no economic value to any of your creditors.
The instructions stated below will apply to all parts of this section.
Description of Property
Enter the important details about your abandoned or disregarded properties.
Value of Property
Enter the value of your abandoned or disregarded properties in U.S. dollars.
Deadline of Objection to Abandonment
Enter the number of days for the deadline of your objection to the abandonment of all of your properties. Your objections must be filed along with your trustee within the agreed-upon number of days from the receipt of this Abandoned Property Report which has been sent by the trustee to all your debtors and lien holders.
The trustee will then request an order approving the abandonment as burdensome and of no economic value to the estate of bankruptcy.
Affix your signature.
Enter your title.
Enter the current date of signing.
Enter your home or residential address.