Editorial: Unclaimed funds returned to Ohio owners


A recent editorial by the Youngstown Vindicator:

Ever do a load of laundry and notice a few shiny coins at the bottom of the washing machine, then exclaim “Finders, keepers?” It’s hard to resist, isn’t it?

Fortunately, the folks at the Ohio Department of Commerce’s Division of Unclaimed Funds don’t employ the same philosophy. In fact, the agency helped return nearly $390,000 to those who visited the Unclaimed Funds booth at the state fair this year. The agency said more than 800 claimants stopped by, and nearly one in three of those people had missing money waiting for them.

One individual found more than $71,000, the result of dividends that had belonged to his late mother. (In fact, many of the funds recovered were the results of dividends and insurance policies being left behind by deceased individuals.)

“Each year, we reconnect tens of thousands of people with their money and property through advertisements and participating in outreach events like the Ohio State Fair. The fair provides us the opportunity to connect with people from across the state,” said Akil Hardy, superintendent of the Division of Unclaimed Funds.

While hundreds of thousands of dollars returned at the state fair is significant, it is worth noting the division returned $134.5 million to Ohioans last fiscal year. It still has more than $3 billion in what it calls “forgotten” money.

Call 877-644-6823 or go to unclaimedfunds.ohio.gov to find out whether any of that is waiting for you and start a claims process. The Division of Unclaimed Funds is holding up its end of the bargain. The rest is up to you.

— Youngstown Vindicator, September 11, 2022