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State treasurer tries to return millions in unclaimed property to Missourians;Business destroyed by tornado listed

Updated:
    More than eight-hundred-million dollars of unclaimed property is maintained by Missouri's State treasurer,  but he's trying to give it back to citizens.

Anyone could be on the list and you can easily check to claim money you might not even know is yours.

“It says that its over 50 dollars,” exclaims Margie Fitterling the business coordinator for Joplin Family Dental, her husband’s dentistry.

 Fitterling began  steps to claim money that the state treasurer says belongs to the Fitterling dental business.

Seeing the business’ name in the newspaper came as a surprise.

Fitterling says, "We are totally unaware of any unclaimed property  we might have. Of course with the tornado, who knows what might be floating out there for the last three years."

But the address listed on the state treasurer’s website  is 2614 McCoy where the old office was located in the tornado zone.

The state treasurer says the tornado is one way the numbers of unclaimed property cases can increase.

More than 120 thousand names were printed in newspapers across the state to alert residents of money to claim.

State Treasurer  Clint Zweifel says, "One in ten Missourians has unclaimed property.  When you look at the impact in this in terms of  the lives of individuals, an average three hundred dollar claim could be a grocery bill.  It could be a health care bill. It could  be heating or cooling. It could be school clothes."

The four pages of names in the Joplin newspaper only represent unclaimed property reported to the treasurer this year. It’s held there forever.  So if you want to find out  if you have some unclaimed  property,  you put your name in on  the treasurer’s website.  Even this reporter surprisingly found unclaimed property listed.  You can get email alerts from the treasurer’s office to tell you if you have unclaimed property even in the future.

Zweifel says, “We'll send you a note if your name pops up, so that we're proactively engaging with Missourians."

Unclaimed property can come from a variety of sources: banks, safety  deposit boxes, insurance policy proceeds, government refunds, even utility deposits and more.

Assets  that by law are turned over to the state to be returned to the rightful owners.

Fitterling says it’s still a mystery from where the money comes.  " I guess the amount probably isn't the key for me right now,  it’s just curiosity."

Her claim will be processed in up to ninety days. Others can go even faster.

The state treasurer's website for unclaimed property is easy to navigate.

Click here for a link.
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