Uncashed Checks: Understanding Unclaimed Property Laws and Reporting Requirements

Unclaimed property, also known as abandoned property, refers to assets that have remained inactive or unclaimed for a specified period. This can include various types of property, such as uncashed checks, dormant bank accounts, uncollected insurance policies, and more. In many jurisdictions, including the state of New York, there are laws in place that require businesses and organizations to report and remit unclaimed property to the state’s comptroller’s office. This article will delve into the topic of uncashed checks as unclaimed property, exploring the relevant laws and reporting requirements in New York State.

Uncashed Checks as Unclaimed Property

Uncashed checks are considered unclaimed property if they meet certain criteria, including:

  • The check has not been cashed or deposited within a specified period, typically ranging from one to five years, depending on the state’s laws.
  • The business or organization issuing the check has made reasonable efforts to locate and notify the payee, but has been unsuccessful.

Reporting Requirements for Uncashed Checks

In New York State, businesses and organizations are required to report and remit unclaimed property, including uncashed checks, to the Office of the State Comptroller. The reporting requirements vary depending on the type of property and the value of the property.

For uncashed checks, the reporting threshold is $50 or more. This means that businesses and organizations must report and remit any uncashed checks that have a value of $50 or more and have remained unclaimed for the specified period.

Reporting Process

The reporting process for uncashed checks involves the following steps:

  1. Review Records: Businesses and organizations should review their records annually to identify any uncashed checks that have reached the dormancy threshold.
  2. Prepare Report: A detailed report must be prepared, including a list of the uncashed checks, the value of each check, and any available information about the payee.
  3. Submit Report: The report can be submitted electronically or by mail to the Office of the State Comptroller.
  4. Remit Funds: Payment for the uncashed checks must be remitted to the Office of the State Comptroller by check or electronic funds transfer.

Penalties for Non-Compliance

Failure to comply with the reporting and remittance requirements for unclaimed property, including uncashed checks, can result in penalties and interest charges. The penalties vary depending on the severity of the non-compliance.

Voluntary Compliance Program

The Office of the State Comptroller offers a Voluntary Compliance Program (VCP) for businesses and organizations that have failed to report and remit unclaimed property in the past. The VCP allows these entities to come into compliance without facing penalties or interest charges.

Uncashed checks can be considered unclaimed property under state laws, and businesses and organizations are required to report and remit such property to the state’s comptroller’s office. The reporting requirements and processes vary depending on the state’s laws and the value of the property. Failure to comply with these requirements can result in penalties and interest charges. Businesses and organizations should be aware of their obligations and take steps to ensure compliance with unclaimed property laws.

Are Uncashed Checks Unclaimed Property? – CountyOffice.org


What does NYS uncashed checks mean?

Why would a check remain uncashed? A check issued from your Plan account can go uncashed for a number of reasons including: it was sent to a wrong address, it was misplaced or forgotten, it was for a small amount or the participant is deceased or became incapacitated.

What is the New York state law on unclaimed funds?

The law requires organizations to review their records annually and transfer accounts that have reached specific dormancy thresholds to the Comptroller, who serves as custodian of the funds until the rightful owners claim them.

What is an uncashed check?

Uncashed checks are issued by agency/department but remain uncashed by the payee. Unclaimed checks are returned to an agency/department for which the payee cannot be located. Agency checks are checks issued from an agency/department’s account that may have Revolving Fund, General Cash, or Trust Fund Cash.

What is unclaimed property in NC?

Unclaimed property consists of bank accounts, wages, utility deposits, insurance policy proceeds, stocks, bonds, and contents of safe deposit boxes that typically have been abandoned for one to five years.

What is an unclaimed property?

Unclaimed properties are assets and money people forgot they had — like uncashed checks (often a final check from an employer), money in old checking or savings accounts, refunds, security deposits, or the contents of a safe deposit box.

How do I find unclaimed money?

Search for unclaimed money from your state’s unclaimed property office. If you have lived in other states, check their unclaimed property offices, too. There is no single government database for all unclaimed money. Use each separate database in the links below to search for each type of unclaimed money.

Where can I find unclaimed property?

Use the interactive map below or select from the list to find the official unclaimed property program for a state or province. Need to search multiple states at once? Most states participate in MissingMoney.com—a free website, managed by NAUPA, from which you can search participating state’s databases for unclaimed property.

What is unclaimed money?

If a business, financial institution, or government owes you money that you did not collect, it is considered unclaimed money or property. You may be able to file for unclaimed money owed to you or that was owed to a deceased relative if you are their legal heir.

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