Recently I received a letter from the California state controller’s office that a check had been mailed to one of my old addresses a year ago and that I needed to fill out a form, get it notarized, include proof of who I am, and mail it in to claim the money.
Here is a link to the program. You can actually search on the California State Controller’s website to see if there is unclaimed money that belongs to you: http://www.sco.ca.gov/col/ucp/aboutucp.shtml
(You can copy and paste this web address into your browser if you have any worry about clicking the above link)
I am posting this page because I am disgusted that a company called U.S. Claims Services just sent me a letter offering to help me claim the money for a mere $29.95. I feel obliged to offer a correction based on 2 new letters I received. It’s actually $35, not $29.95 as of 12/19/05.
According to their letter, they say “we will send you the necessary documents and instructions to recover your money.”
In otherwords, for your $29.95 U.S. Claims Services will send you the same forms that the government sends you or that you could download from the state controller’s website.
But wait there’s more. You can go to their website THEN pay $29.95 THEN download the documents from their site! Wow, nice business model. They don’t even have to foot the bill for any postage or printing.
Here is a link to all the forms you need to claim unclaimed cash from the California State Controller’s Office:http://www.sco.ca.gov/col/ucp/forms/index.shtml
You can simply print them out and follow their instructions for documentation needed if you have a valid claim.
If you are outside California visit Unclaimed.org which links to all the United States’ official unclaimed property systems where you can search on your name and probably download forms.
Here is a link to an About.com article about unclaimed cash, which includes a link to info on how to recover unclaimed cash in various states: http://usgovinfo.about.com/library/weekly/aa100399.htm
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