One state experimented with keeping people’s unclaimed money if they didn’t claim it in time. That state is Idaho, the Gem state, although most people probably think of it as the potato state. Yes, for quite a while, Idaho was the ONLY state in the country that had a law on the books stating that if citizens didn’t claim their lost accounts within a decade, the state got to keep the money.
Idaho receives nearly $20 million dollars a year worth of unclaimed money, and less than a quarter of rightful owners come forward to claim it, so you can see that the politicians were raking in the dough with this 10-year deadline.
That’s not very long to give people to claim what’s rightfully theirs, especially given that most people have never heard of unclaimed money…and some people have money waiting out there for them from their ancestors, so they’re even less likely to do a search.
Fortunately, in 2012, Idaho politicians felt the heat and changed the law. Today, just like the other 49 states and the District of Columbia, Idaho holds unclaimed money for its citizens forever. As it should be. The whole reason states started grabbing unclaimed money from businesses in the 1960s is because they argued that they would be better stewards of our money and keep it safe.
If you have ever lived or done business in Idaho, I will link you to the Idaho state treasurer’s website, where you can conduct a search. Yes, they changed the law, but I wouldn’t dilly dally. Idaho’s just one budget crisis away from writing a new law to snag YOUR unclaimed money.
Find unclaimed money in Idaho: