Businesses must report unclaimed property

Written on Oct 10, 2019

Provided by the Ohio Department of Commerce

Are you aware that companies doing business in Ohio are required to report unclaimed property from dormant accounts to the Ohio Department of Commerce? Even if the company has no unclaimed property, a negative or “none” report is still required to be filed.

For non-life insurance companies, the deadline for reporting is Nov. 1 for accounts dormant as of June 30. For life insurance companies the reporting deadline is May 1 for accounts dormant as of Dec. 31. Political subdivisions and 501(c)(3) hospitals are exempt from filing.

What is unclaimed property? Examples include:

  • Bank Accounts
  • Insurance Proceeds
  • IRA Accounts
  • Uncashed checks
  • Stocks, bonds, mutual funds
  • Escrow Funds
  • Utility Deposits
  • Safe Deposit Box Contents

To identify these unclaimed properties, the company's accountant or controller would need to review the company’s accounting records to identify dormant accounts they might be holding. Once these accounts and properties have been identified, the companies are required to complete the due diligence process by sending a “Notice of Unclaimed Funds” to the last known address of the owner or beneficiary of dormant accounts with a balance of $50, and less than $1,000, via first class mail. Companies are required to send the mandatory due diligence notice to the owner or beneficiary of accounts with a value of $1,000 or more by certified mail, return receipt requested. The company is authorized to charge up to $20 against each account subject to the mailing to reimburse themselves for the certified mail cost. Include a self-addressed, stamped, return envelope. Allow a minimum of 30 days for the owner or beneficiary to respond to the notice prior to reporting their funds as unclaimed.

If the company cannot contact the owner, the property then must be reported. The division encourages companies with more than 50 unclaimed accounts to file an electronic report on CD-ROM or DVD in National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrator Standard Electronic File Format or by using the HRS Pro - Holder Reporting System. Companies can also use UPExchange to report the property. Companies can also report unclaimed funds online through the Ohio Business Gateway by uploading a NAUPA electronic reporting file and paying the balance due to the state via ACH Debit Transfer. Online help and support, tutorials and telephone support are available via the Ohio Business Gateway.

The company will need to report all accounts of $50 or more, for which there was no response to the due diligence mailing, if the notice was returned due to a bad address or if the owner’s address is unknown. No mailing is required for accounts less than $50, however applicable accounts would be reportable as an aggregate total. There is no minimum amount reportable. If a diligent search has shown that the company is not holding any unclaimed funds, or if all owners respond to the “Notice of Unclaimed Funds” mailing, you must file a Negative report.

To learn more visit the Ohio Division of Unclaimed Funds website at www.com.ohio.gov/unfd.

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