|Updated: 9/26/2012 1:47 pm
||Published: 9/26/2012 1:33 pm
LITTLE ROCK, AR — The Great Arkansas Treasure Hunt is underway and State Auditor Charlie Daniels hopes to track down Arkansans with abandoned cash, stocks, bonds, jewelry and other assets that were recently turned over to his office under Arkansas’ Unclaimed Property Program.
In a release, Daniels said his office collected $23.9 million for fiscal year 2012. A total of over $178 million is still waiting to be found.
“With nearly 700,000 names on the list, there’s a good chance we could have property belonging to you,” Daniels said. “That’s why I encourage everyone to check their local newspaper or take a look at our website.”
The Great Arkansas Treasure Hunt is an annual awareness program conducted by the Auditor of State to help reunite unclaimed property owners with their lost assets. The 2012 list of unclaimed property will be published in newspapers across the state beginning on September 27, but Arkansans can search the Auditor’s website anytime at www.auditor.ar.gov.
Arkansas law requires businesses and government organizations to report abandoned property to the Auditor of State after the property remains unclaimed for a specified period of time, usually 1-5 years. Unclaimed property can include things like credit balances, security deposits, utility refunds, stocks, bonds, cash and even mineral royalties. Once the property is turned over to the Auditor of State, it remains in trust for the original owner or the owner’s heirs to come forward and claim. Since the program's inception, the Auditor of State has returned over $90 million to original owners of unclaimed property.
Items making their way to the auditor’s unclaimed property vault this year include baseball card and stamp collections, jewelry, savings bonds, foreign currency and bundles of cash and coins. For now, these remain secured in the unclaimed property vault along with countless other coins, jewelry, personal papers and other interesting and unusual abandoned items that have accumulated over the years.
Search for unclaimed property or learn more about filing a claim by visiting www.auditor.ar.gov. For questions about the claims process, call 1-800-CLAIM-IT or send an email to email@example.com.