Canada needs Unclaimed Property Legislation

Common Types of Unclaimed Property

Unclaimed property is property that has been abandoned, lost or forgotten by its rightful owner. There are many reasons property can become Unclaimed including often, the death of the rightful owner.

The most common types of financial assets that have become unclaimed are:

  • Bank accounts/Credit Union accounts
  • Over payments made to businesses or deposits such as Utilities
  • Stocks, mutual funds, bonds, and dividends
  • Funds reserved (undeposited) certified cheques, drafts or money orders
  • GICs or Certificates of deposit
  • Pensions
  • Insurance policy proceeds, Insurance refunds and amounts payable resulting from Demutalizations of mutual insurance companies
  • Education Savings plans
  • Prepaid Funeral deposits
  • Tax refunds
  • Mineral interests and royalty payments, trust funds, and escrow account
  • Contents of Safety Deposit Boxes-which may include valuables and sentimental items
  • Uncashed payroll cheques
  • Unused Gift Card balances

And here are some tips on how not to lose these types of financial assets:

  • Cash all incoming deposits promptly and/or setup direct deposit
  • Keep up to date records of all of your financial accounts & contacts like banks, brokers, credit unions, Utility companies etc. Make sure to include the ones you deal with online.
  • Make a separate list of all of the financial organizations you deal with to share with your family
  • Make contact with your financial organizations at least once per year and always ensure that you notify them of any address changes promptly or any changes in ownership of your assets due to death/divorce
  • Make copies of your important documents and ensure that your family knows where to find them and knows about all of your financial assets
  • Provide all of your financial organizations with a secondary contact or beneficiary name and contact address
  • Pay annual fees on items like safety deposit boxes or memberships  on time to ensure that your account does not become inactive

And yes. LegacyTracker will help you keep track of all of these assets and help you share that information with loved ones or advisors so it does not become unclaimed.