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How do I get money owed to me by the government?

The government is holding billions of dollars on behalf of individuals, families, and companies.  This money is from unclaimed life insurance policies, refund checks that never get cashed, contents of safety deposit boxes, unused gift cards, lost US Savings Bonds, forgotten pensions, and more. How do I get government unclaimed money owed to me?

How to Claim Government Unclaimed Money

As with anything involving bureaucracy, dealing with the system can be confusing and frustrating.  Although I don’t believe the government makes anything difficult intentionally, it is the nature of the bureaucratic beast to be mildly frustrating on a good day.

The easiest monies to recover are held by State Treasurers and the Treasurers have been working over the past few years to implement internet-based claims submission processes.  As those have come online recovering funds has become easier.

The Proof You Need

The process is to fill in a form, provide proof of your identity (usually a copy of government-issued ID), and proof that you are the person or company owed the money. They will then release the money to you.  The process takes a few months and you get a check. Inlife Claims is a database that will help you in the search for your unclaimed funds from the government.

Providing proof you are eligible for government unclaimed money can be a little trickier.  If the unclaimed money is listed at an old address you may be asked to provide proof you were associated with that address.  There you may need to get old bank statements (banks can often provide old statements for a moderate fee), utility bills, deeds, or leases.

You can get some help in your search from InLife Claims.  That is a Private Company that has a multi-state database that can help find the government unclaimed money.  Searching is quick, easy, and free.

Generally, with patience and persistence, you can work through the issues.