PA Treasury returned $13.2 million in unpaid life insurance benefits since 2009; search www.patreasury.gov
Harrisburg – March 24, 2014 – (RealEstateRama) — Life insurance is an important tool to protect the economic security of loved ones, but State Treasurer Rob McCord today reminded Pennsylvanians to take steps to ensure that these benefits serve their intended purpose and do not end up as unclaimed property reported to the Pennsylvania Treasury. The Treasurer noted that his department has reunited $13.2 million in unclaimed life insurance benefits with the rightful owners, but much more remains available for claim in Treasury’s free online database at www.patreasury.gov.
“Each year, Treasury receives millions of dollars of unclaimed property, a considerable portion of which are unpaid or uncollected life insurance benefits,” Treasurer McCord said. “I want to remind families who suspect a deceased loved one may have had a life insurance policy but never saw the funds to visit www.patreasury.gov and find out if we are holding proceeds that belong back where the insured intended – with the beneficiary.”
Financial assets wind up with Treasury after around five years of no contact with the owner, or in the case of life insurance policies, with the insured or the beneficiary. Treasury’s holder compliance unit has increased efforts to collect dormant life insurance proceeds and make insurers aware of their obligations under Pennsylvania’s unclaimed property law.
Treasurer McCord reminded insurance companies that April 15 is the annual deadline to remit dormant, unpaid life insurance proceeds to Treasury. Writing off unclaimed property as income does not relieve this liability, the Treasurer noted. Treasury’s holder compliance staff is available to assist companies with filing their unclaimed property reports at 1-800-379-3999.
Since 2009, Treasury has collected $123 million in unpaid life insurance benefits from several of the nation’s largest insurers and has so far retuned $13.2 million as part of this ongoing effort.
To prevent life insurance benefits from becoming unclaimed property, Treasurer McCord stressed the importance of communicating with family members and beneficiaries about any insurance policies taken out. One idea might be to include records of life insurance policies with wills or estate planning documents.
Each year, Treasury receives millions of dollars in unclaimed property – things such as abandoned bank accounts, forgotten stocks, uncashed checks, and contents of safe deposit boxes. Treasurer McCord’s Return Team is working hard to locate the rightful owners of $2.2 billion in unclaimed property, all of which is searchable via Treasury’s free online database at www.patreasury.gov.
Since January 2009, the McCord Treasury has collected more than $1.1 billion in property, returned more than $532 million to rightful owners, and generated about $617 million for the state’s General Fund through the Unclaimed Property Program.
To learn more about Pennsylvania’s Unclaimed Property Program or to search for money and property, visit www.patreasury.gov or call 1-800-222-2046.
Media contact: Elizabeth Foose, 717-787-2991 or