Berks County Receives Over $26,000 in Unclaimed Property Returns from Pennsylvania Treasury

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READING, PA — In an effort to put lost and forgotten assets back into the hands of their rightful owners, Pennsylvania State Treasurer Stacy Garrity this week returned more than $26,000 worth of unclaimed property to Berks County. The announcement was made in conjunction with Berks County Commissioners Leinbach, Rivera, and Santoni.

The returned sum includes 99 individual properties, ranging in value from a mere 50 cents to a substantial $5,248.79. The properties date back to as far as 1986 and include a variety of forgotten assets such as uncashed checks, credit balances, and refunds.

Unclaimed property refers to assets that have been uncollected or forgotten by their rightful owners for a certain period, typically three years. These can include dormant bank accounts, insurance policies, or even the contents of forgotten safe deposit boxes. After this period of “dormancy,” state law requires these businesses to report such unclaimed property to the Treasury.

Treasurer Garrity emphasized the importance of returning these assets to their rightful owners, stating, “I’m glad to safeguard unclaimed property, but it doesn’t belong to the state – and getting it back into the right hands is one of my top priorities.”

This isn’t the first time Berks County has benefited from the Treasury’s efforts. In November 2022, the county received an additional $53,946.48 in unclaimed property, bringing the total to $80,185.26.

Commissioner Christian Leinbach expressed his gratitude for the returned funds, stating, “In this economy, every little bit can make a difference. I’m pleased that our State Treasurer Stacy Garrity is doing everything possible to see these funds are returned to Berks County.”

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The returned funds will be put to good use, with county officials deciding how best to allocate them for the benefit of the community.

Since taking office, Treasurer Garrity has returned over $16 million in unclaimed property to 74 local government agencies across Pennsylvania, including counties, municipalities, and school districts.

However, the work is far from over. The Treasury is currently holding onto more than $4.5 billion in unclaimed property, waiting to be returned to its rightful owners. Garrity encourages individuals, businesses, and government agencies to regularly check the Treasury’s database for any unclaimed property they might be owed, stating, “Treasury receives hundreds of millions of dollars worth of unclaimed property every year, and we’re always working to get that money back into the right hands.”

With more than one in ten Pennsylvanians owing unclaimed property, and the average claim being worth about $1,600, it’s clear the process of returning these forgotten assets is not only crucial but potentially life-changing for some.

Tangible unclaimed property is held by the Treasury for about three years before it is auctioned off. However, the proceeds from these auctions are kept indefinitely, allowing owners to claim their assets at any time. It’s important to note that military decorations and memorabilia are never auctioned off.

For Berks County residents interested in checking if they have unclaimed property or learning more about the process, they can visit the Pennsylvania Treasury’s dedicated website.

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