Miramant bill would facilitate return of lost money to Mainers

Posted: April 25, 2017 | Senator Miramant

AUGUSTA — A bill by Sen. Dave Miramant, D-Camden, would require the State Treasurer to list the names of people with over $10,000 in unclaimed property upon request.

The bill — LD 668, “An Act to Facilitate the Return of Unclaimed Property” — received a public hearing before the Judiciary Committee on Tuesday.

“Unclaimed property” is money owed to Maine people by third parties, such as former employers, banks or utility companies. Maine law requires that any entity with cash that is presumed abandoned must report the money to the State Treasurer annually, with the name of the apparent owner and the dollar amount included. The State Treasurer posts a list of unclaimed property by November 30 of each year.

The way the list is currently posted, unclaimed property values only show whether the amount is over or under $1,000. Sen. Miramant’s bill makes a list of those with unclaimed property of more than $10,000 available by request, facilitating an easier return of larger sums to the owner.

“This bill is an effort to make sure those who have large sums of unclaimed money can more easily find it,” said Miramant. “Since our goal is to maximize the amount of money returned to our constituents, this bill could make a big difference toward that end.”

Miramant said that one of his constituents tries to find the people who are owed money from the unclaimed property list to return to the rightful owners. This bill would make it easier for him and others to find and prioritize larger amounts of money when searching the Treasurer’s list.

LD 668 faces further action in the Judiciary Committee and votes in the House and Senate.