Is the State Holding Your Association’s Money?

by Pullman & Comley, LLC

Like many other states, Connecticut has appointed itself as the official “lost and found” for all money abandoned within the state’s borders.  We’re not talking about coins dropped on a sidewalk.  Abandoned money can include old bank accounts, uncashed checks, stocks and bonds, money orders, life insurance policies, and other valuable assets.  Connecticut is currently holding $602 million for 1,114,607 rightful owners who have yet to ask for it back.

The legal term for this governmental function is “escheat,” and the rationale is that the State is in the best position to look after these funds until the owners step forward to claim them.  The State, of course, uses and invests the money in the meantime.  The Unclaimed Property Division of the state Treasurer’s Office is responsible for collecting and disbursing the funds.  The program operates under a series of statutes which require banks, courts, businesses, utility companies, employers, hospitals, and virtually anyone else holding the assets of someone with whom they’ve lost contact.  This often includes money left over in accounts of customers with bad mailing addresses or the property of a person who dies with no known heirs.  After a fixed period of unsuccessful efforts to locate a rightful owner, usually between three and five years, the holder of the money is legally required to turn it over to the State (in fact, the State can sue the holder for failing to do so). 

Why does this matter to your community association?  Because a great deal of the money which the State is holding belongs to condominiums and similar organizations.  Often the money is part of the auction proceeds from a mortgage foreclosure against a unit owner after the bank was paid in full.  The community association never claimed its share of those proceeds for any unpaid common charges, probably because the wrong person was served with the original lawsuit paperwork (like an old manager or board member no longer in touch with the community), or the Executive Board did not understand how to properly participate in the litigation.  After a few years of waiting, the court simply forwarded the extra money to the Treasurer’s Office.  Other sources of unclaimed funds owed to associations might include credits on cancelled utility and insurance accounts, vendor rebates and refunds, and operating and reserve accounts held by a bank which wasn’t given contact information for an incoming board or manager. 

The amount held by the State in these situations may be only a few dollars, or it might be thousands.  During the last fiscal year, the State returned a record $83 million to 18,381 claimants.  That’s an average of over $4,500 to each claimant just for stepping forward to claim their own money which someone else didn’t know how to forward them.  Usually the only reason escheated money remains unclaimed is because the rightful owner had no idea it existed.  Fortunately, in the internet age, the process for discovering and claiming escheated funds is relatively simple.  The Treasurer’s Office maintains a website that makes it very easy to look up whether your association is owed any money.  There is no deadline; no matter how many years have passed since the money was abandoned, the State will honor a proper claim and send a check to the rightful owner or his descendants. 

Go to and enter your association’s name in the “last name” field.  If listings appear, you can click on them to create a claim form which will tell you the nature of the unclaimed assets and which you can fill out and print to submit by mail.  Be careful – after you click on the confirmation button to create the claim form, the website will block later access to the listing (to prevent duplicate claims), so don’t quit before finishing the entire procedure.  When you mail in the completed form, you will need to include:

(1) written proof of your right to submit the claim on the association’s behalf, such as a management contract or a signed board resolution;

(2) a document showing the association’s federal ID number, such as a copy of a federal tax return or a typed (not handwritten) W-9 form;

(3) copies of your own driver’s license and social security card; and

(4) if the funds were deposited with two name-identifiers (like the association and a management company), a letter from the depositor confirming that either one may properly claim ownership.  Large companies that regularly process escheats will have an “unclaimed funds department” available to help.

After the Treasurer’s Office verifies the claim paperwork, you can expect a check to be mailed out to the association a few weeks later.  Unfortunately the website will not reveal the dollar amount being held.  Instead, you just have to submit the claim and wait for the Treasurer’s Office to respond with the details. 

While you’re at it, try entering your own name on the website as well.  The State just might be holding money for you personally as well.

[View source.]

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Pullman & Comley, LLC | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Pullman & Comley, LLC

Pullman & Comley, LLC on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.


JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at:

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.