Business & Real Estate

State expands online process to retrieve unclaimed property

The State Controller’s Office has expanded the online process to retrieve unclaimed property.

Owners of unclaimed property can now make paperless electronic claims for accounts worth as much as $5,000, up from the previous threshold of $1,000.

The process can be done at

“An increased threshold of $5,000 will allow many more Californians to claim lost or forgotten property online and quickly receive a check in the mail,” said state Controller Betty Yee in a statement. The office is projecting a 38 percent increase in returned property.

The State Controller’s Office says it possesses more than $8 billion in unclaimed property belonging to about 32.5 million individuals or organizations.

Established in 1959, California’s unclaimed property law requires banks, corporations and other entities to report and transfer property to the State Controller’s Office when there has been no activity for a prolonged period of time, generally three years. Common types of unclaimed property are bank accounts, stocks, bonds, uncashed checks, wages, life insurance benefits and safe deposit box contents.

Mark Glover: 916-321-1184, @markhglover