Local News

State aims to reunite Vermont nonprofits with unclaimed property

 

The pilot program will return over $150,000 to over 250 nonprofit organizations in Vermont

State Treasurer Mike Pieciak and Secretary of State Sarah Copeland Hanzas announced a pilot partnership to reunite Vermont nonprofit organizations with their unclaimed property. Using the Secretary of State’s database to verify current addresses, checks will be sent to over 250 Vermont nonprofits with unclaimed property, totaling over $150,000 returned. Any nonprofit verified through the Secretary of State database should receive a certified letter from the Treasurer alerting them to expect a check any day now.

“We are thrilled to be working in partnership with Treasurer Pieciak to help identify Vermont nonprofits that have unclaimed property,” said Secretary Copeland Hanzas. “All across the state Vermont nonprofits are doing critical work for our communities. I’m proud to be working with Treasurer Pieciak to return funds to these organizations so they can use it to support their mission.”

The announcement was initially made in connection with National Unclaimed Property Day, Feb. 1. Unclaimed property includes uncashed checks, forgotten security deposits, investments, and other property. While the Treasurer’s Office typically processes over 17,000 claims annually, the amount of unclaimed property held by the state continues to grow.

The Treasurer’s Office typically raises awareness about unclaimed property through media campaigns and outreach events, but Treasurer Pieciak is adopting a proactive approach to address the state’s growing amount of unclaimed property, currently totaling nearly $120 million.

“Returning these funds will support organizations who are the fabric of our communities and often support Vermont’s most vulnerable,” said Treasurer Pieciak. “As many nonprofit organizations face financial challenges from inflation to workforce shortages and this summer’s flood, I’m excited we can return these dollars that will make a difference in Vermonters’ lives.”

In October 2023, the Treasurer’s Office partnered with the Dept. of Taxes to send unclaimed property checks ranging from $200 to $225 (totaling over $70,000) to 340 Vermonters. That pilot program has proven successful and the Treasurer’s Office is looking for opportunities to expand the pilot and establish additional partnerships.

Vermonters are encouraged to visit missingmoney.com to check for unclaimed property. For inquiries regarding a claim or assistance with the claims process, individuals may contact the Unclaimed Property Division at (802) 828-2407 or at unclaimed.property@vermont.gov.

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