What is Unclaimed Money in New Hampshire?
Unclaimed money is money that has remained dormant or untouched for an extended period after becoming payable or distributable. This money can be in the form of checks, dividends, wages, credit balances, security deposits, stocks, bonds, insurance policies, amounts distributable from a trust, etc.
In New Hampshire, every sum of money held by a financial institution, government agency, or other entity has a fixed period within which the rightful owner must claim it. This period (known as a dormancy period) varies by the type of money. For instance, New Hampshire law mandates a 15-year dormancy period for traveler's checks. Once the dormancy period passes, the agency or organization (the holder) must transfer the funds to the state. This process is known as escheatment.
Unclaimed money in New Hampshire is escheated to the State Treasury's Abandoned Property Division under RSA 471-C:2 (New Hampshire's Unclaimed Property law). The division focuses on connecting owners to their unclaimed properties using several channels, including mail notices, advertisements, social media, public announcements, and more.
How to Find Unclaimed Money in New Hampshire
The New Hampshire State Treasury's Abandoned Property Division compiles a government list of unclaimed money for the public. Persons who want to search this list can access the division's Unclaimed Property portal, available on its website. However, individuals whose properties have remained unclaimed for three years or older must contact the division directly:
New Hampshire State Treasury
Abandoned Property Division
25 Capitol Street
Concord, NH 03301
Phone: (603) 271-2619
In New Hampshire: (800) 791-0920
Fax: (603) 271-2730
How Do I Find New Hampshire Unclaimed Money for Free?
New Hampshire's Abandoned Property Division reunites individuals with their unclaimed money for free. As such, there is no cost attached to searching the division's unclaimed property database or contacting/visiting the agency to recover unclaimed money.
New Hampshire residents can also find unclaimed money through federal government agencies. For example, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of New Hampshire, whose unclaimed funds can be found with the Unclaimed Funds Locator.
How to Claim Unclaimed Money in New Hampshire
Individuals who want to claim unclaimed money in New Hampshire can begin by searching the state's unclaimed property database with a last or business name. (A search can be further streamlined with a first name, city name, zip code, or property ID.) This action will bring up all properties that correspond with the inputted information, including:
- The owner's full name (or co-owner, where applicable)
- The holder's name
- City and Zip code
- Amount, and
- Property ID
After locating the abandoned fund(s), the individual can follow these steps:
- Click the "Claim" button to select one or more items.
- Hover the mouse over the "Continue to File Claim" button that appears to review the selected properties or click "Review Claimed Properties" or "Continue to File Claim" to proceed to the next screen.
- Select relationship to the property owner and click "File Claim". The options include:
- Owner or Authorized Signatory
- Legal Heir or Estate Personal Representative
- Power of Attorney
- Selecting the "File Claim" button screen generates a claim form each claimant must complete. After completing and submitting the form, the system will generate a claim ID, which the claimant can use to check the claim status later on.
Each claimant must upload copies of certain supporting documents online or submit originals of some documents (if required) to the New Hampshire Treasury's Abandoned Property Division. The claim form contains all documentation requirements based on the type of claimant. Examples include:
- A government-issued identification. For example, a driver's license
- A document that serves as proof of reported address. For example, a utility bill, tax bill from a city/town hall, deed or mortgage statement, check with proof of reported address
- Proof of Social Security. For example, a social security card or tax return
- Death certificate (if the original property owner is deceased)
How Long Does It Take to Get Unclaimed Money in New Hampshire?
There is no set timeline for receiving unclaimed money in New Hampshire; it varies by the claim. However, the New Hampshire Abandoned Property Division mails a written notice to each claimant within 90 days of filing the claim, informing them of whether their claim has been denied in whole or part. This notice is mailed to the address indicated in the claim or to the claimant's last known address if no address is stated in the claim.
For approved claims, the division will pay the unclaimed money to the claimant or the net proceeds from sales, including any amount permitted under RSA 471-C:23.
Who Can Claim Unclaimed Money From Deceased Relatives in New Hampshire?
In New Hampshire, a surviving spouse or family member named the next of kin can claim unclaimed money from a deceased person. However, before the state's treasury department releases this money, the claimant must have proof of their relationship with the deceased and proof of death.
Per the law, a spouse must provide a marriage certificate, death certificate, and open probate, while the next of kin must provide a probate court document and death certificate. Furthermore, New Hampshire law requires a probate estate to be opened for the deceased's property in a probate court. This verifies that a person has court authorization to claim the deceased's property.
What Happens to New Hampshire Unclaimed Money if No One Claims It?
No New Hampshire law limits when an owner can collect unclaimed money from the State Treasury's Abandoned Property Division. The division holds unclaimed money forever. Thus, even if several years pass, the rightful owner, their family member, heir, or legal representative can still claim the money.
Can Someone in New Hampshire Claim Unclaimed Money From Another State?
Yes. Someone in New Hampshire can claim unclaimed money from another U.S. state through that state's unclaimed property administrator. Typically, the interested person must submit a formal claim and certain supporting documents to the applicable state agency. The required claim form and required documents can be obtained from the agency.
Unclaimed money in the United States is public and can be accessed by anyone through official or non-governmental services. Third-party unclaimed money search engines are easy to use and deliver fast results not limited by geographic region. Users can typically search for unclaimed money through third-party search sites using just a full name or business name. However, because these sites are not government-sponsored, the availability and accuracy of results can vary.