Illinois Unclaimed Property Program: Check Your Mail for $5K Check

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Some Illinois residents could receive a $5,000 check, thanks to the Illinois Unclaimed Property program. All they need to do is check their mailboxes regularly to ensure they don’t miss a letter and $5,000 check from the state treasurer’s office.

Illinois Unclaimed Property Program: What Is It?

According to the state treasurer’s website, the state is in possession of over $3.5 billion in unclaimed funds. Such funds primarily include dormant accounts belonging to corporations, financial institutions, courts and life insurance companies.

In August, State Treasurer Michael Frerichs announced that more than 66,000 residents may receive up to $5,000 through the Illinois Unclaimed Property program. Recent updates to the Unclaimed Property Program will allow eligible residents to receive the unclaimed money without having to file a claim as previously required.

A press release last month said that the treasurer coordinated with the state General Assembly to use the data from the state’s Money Match program to send quicker payments to residents who are owed money through the state’s Unclaimed Property program.

Further, the press release said that the new Enhanced Money Match Program would allow the authorities to use the already collected data on residents and crossmatch it with the treasurer’s unclaimed property database.

After authorities use the technology to match the name and mailing address, the unclaimed property owner will receive a letter from the Treasurer’s Office, detailing the amount and source of the money. Once the “additional security step is concluded,” the Treasurer’s Office will issue the check in the name of the owner.

When To Expect The Money

The amount is limited to cash owed to an individual. It must be noted that the amount owed doesn’t include the money owed to multiple parties, shares and bonds, safe deposit boxes, escrow accounts and the joint holdings of a parent and minor child.

“…lawmakers also agreed to raise the automatic payment cap to $5,000. Enhanced Money Match is the latest improvement that leverages technology to return money to individuals quickly and efficiently,” the release said. The previous cap was $2,000.

Authorities already sent the Enhanced Money Match letters to about 66,700 eligible residents last month. The $5,000 checks were expected to be sent a few weeks after the issue of the letter. A total of $47 million is estimated to be returned through the Illinois Unclaimed Property program.

“All they have to do is endorse it and cash the check,” Frerichs said. “We’ve tried to make it very easy to remove excuses that people have had to put more money into our economy.”

Recipients will be free to spend the money on anything they want. According to the authorities, the Illinois Unclaimed Property program will provide the much-needed cushion to residents, including helping with back-to-school expenses and paying rent.

Visit the state Treasurer website for more information on the Illinois Unclaimed Property program.

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