Florida’s Unclaimed Property Program


Many Floridians are unaware of Florida’s unclaimed property program. This program works to return claims lost or unknown funds to the rightful owners. The property consists of dormant accounts in financial institutions, insurance and utility companies, securities and trust holdings. Unclaimed property can also include tangible belongings such as jewelry, coins, currency, stamps, store items and other miscellaneous articles from abandoned safe deposit boxes.

I am happy to report that during the last two years, the state has returned more than $717 million in unclaimed property to Florida families and businesses. This returned money not only benefits our citizens but also stimulates Florida’s economy by circulating additional discretionary income back into our local communities and businesses.

I encourage everyone who has ever resided in Florida or has relatives who live or have lived in our state to visit www.FLtreasurehunt.org. The website has unlimited search functions which allow you to create and print claim forms for any account for which you are entitled. If you find a match and believe it is yours, you can print and complete a claim form and mail it to the department, or you can request a claim form be mailed to you. Each claim form includes instructions and lists the documentation required to prove the claim. 

When the contents of safe deposit boxes go unclaimed for years without an owner being found, the merchandise is appraised and sold at an unclaimed property auction, the proceeds of which are used to fund Florida’s schools. Should a property owner discover that he or she owned an item that was auctioned, the proceeds from the sale can be claimed any time at no cost. 

Unclaimed Property is a financial asset that is unknown or lost, or has been left inactive, unclaimed or abandoned by its owner. Unclaimed Property assets are held by business or government entities (holders) for a set period of time, usually five years. If the holder is unable to locate, re-establish contact with the owner and return the asset, it is reported and remitted to the Florida Department of Financial Services, Division of Unclaimed Property.  

The Department makes these accounts available in a searchable, interactive database, available free of charge, 24 hours a day, and allows claimants to initiate a claims process (with instructions) for accounts they believe they are entitled to claim. There is no statute of limitations on unclaimed property in Florida. Account owners, or their heirs, can claim their funds indefinitely.

Until claimed, unclaimed funds are deposited into Florida’s school fund for the benefit of public education. There is no statute of limitations, however, and consumers have the right to claim their property at any time, at no cost.

The next unclaimed property auction will be held this month in Orlando. August 23rd is the preview day and the auction will be on August 24th at the DoubleTree Orlando Airport. The event is open to the public.

  • State Representative Richard Stark (D – Weston) represents House District 104 which includes all of Weston. You can reach Rep. Stark at [email protected] or by calling his legislative office at 954-217-0287.