Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford attended an I-Cash events at the Township Offices in Barrington on Feb. 21 to help reunite people with their unclaimed money and property. Over 28 percent searches were successful in locating cash or valuables that belonged to them with the help of I-Cash staff. In fact, 2,568,983 owners in Cook County have $1,061,654,732 in unclaimed property waiting for them. This is according to the January list of unclaimed property holders.
“More people are doing these unclaimed property searches than ever before. It’s exciting to me because I want to see these valuable assets returned,” said Rutherford. “I also hope everyone makes an attempt to review our online database annually so they don’t miss out on money or valuable assets the state is holding for them.”
The I-Cash program helps reunite owners with their unclaimed property. The Unclaimed Property Division has $1.7 billion in cash, plus contents from Illinois safe deposit boxes that have been inactive for at least five years. DuringRutherford’s first year in office, the program marked the first time in history that the treasurer’s office returned more than $100 million to the people who owned those assets. The total returned for 2012 was $129 million, a 27 percent increase over the previous year. In past administrations, the I-Cash program returned about $80 million annually to owners. It’s common for people to lose track of their assets when they move or when loved ones pass away. Businesses and banks are required to turn over unclaimed accounts to the treasurer’s office.
Some examples of unclaimed property currently held by the treasurer’s office include the following:
- Money from inactive savings and checking accounts
- Unpaid wages or commissions
- Stocks, bonds and mutual funds
- Money orders and bill overpayments
- Paid-up life insurance policies
- Safe deposit box contents.
To find out if you have unclaimed property through I-Cash, you can visit the treasurer’s website at Icash.Illinois.gov and follow the I-Cash link. The website is updated weekly to reflect new properties remitted to the office. Additionally, our I-Cash teams conduct regular outreach events across the state, place twice-annual notices in newspapers and send direct mail to new single-owner claimants with property worth more than $100. You can contact the Unclaimed Property Division by calling 217-785-6998 or emailing info@Icash.Illinois.gov, although searches cannot be completed by telephone.
Information submitted by Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford's office