It's hard to think that people in Iowa have property they might not even know about. How do you forget you own something or have shares and just leave it unclaimed? The crazy thing is that many Iowans have unclaimed property and finding it to claim it is super easy.

Recently, one Iowan was notified by the state about a substantial amount of unclaimed property and that person is now a millionaire. We're not sure if they were before getting called by the state, but they sure are now.

attachment-Iowa Map

Are you an Iowa resident? Maybe you have $4.5 million of unclaimed property and shares waiting for you to claim. Or maybe $100. Either way, it's time for you to look.

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$4.5 Million Claimed From The Great Iowa Treasure Hunt

State Treasurer Roby Smith announced he reunited an Iowan with unclaimed property valued at a record-breaking $4.5 million from the Great Iowa Treasure Hunt. Smith said,

“At some point, the owner invested in over 15,000 shares in McDonald’s Corporation. When the company deemed the property unclaimed, it was turned over to the State since the owner’s last known address was in Iowa. Like we do for all owners, my office sent a due diligence letter to inform them of the unclaimed funds in the Great Iowa Treasure Hunt. This prompted a claim, and the rest is history!”

The Treasurer’s Office must hold on to shares for at least one year before they can be sold; the proceeds are then held for the owner in lieu of shares. Smith said that because the owner was prompt in responding to the state's due diligence letter, they were able to return the shares and the dividends that accrued while the Treasurer's Office was the custodian.

State Treasurer of Iowa
State Treasurer of Iowa

If that doesn't make you want to search your name at each year, I don't know what does.

The Treasurer's Office says that the Great Iowa Treasure Hunt is Iowa’s only legitimate source of unclaimed property, and has returned over $346 million to more than 951,000 individuals. State Treasurer Smith said that this announcement should be a great reminder to log into your investments from time to time before your account goes dormant.

"While we love returning property to the owners, we do our best to give tips to prevent it from coming here in the first place."

In addition to shares, forgotten checking and savings accounts, stocks, uncashed checks, life insurance policies, utility refunds, and abandoned safe deposit box contents are also examples of unclaimed property. Businesses and financial institutions are required by law to send these assets to the State Treasurer’s Office after going a certain period of time with no successful contact with the owner, generally three years.

Smith safeguards the assets and works to reunite them with the owner or rightful heir through the Great Iowa Treasure Hunt.

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