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How To Claim Your Unclaimed Property

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - It's almost like a dream. The money is out there floating before your eyes and all you have to do is reach out and take it.

This cornucopia of dreams can come true at the State Treasurer's Office in Harrisburg.

"We want to put money back in your wallet, where it belongs, to work for you," Assistant Director of Unclaimed Property Maureen Ferrari said.

It's your money and all you have to do is know that it's there waiting for you to claim it.

"The money comes from banks, insurance companies, corporations. A lot of the money comes from uncashed wage checks. Insurance proceeds make up a lot of the unclaimed property, Ferrari said.

Finding out whether any of that money is yours is unbelievably easy. Your name could be among the thousands on the Pennsylvania Treasurer's Unclaimed Money List.

To prove just how easy it is to check, KDKA's John Shumway took his iPad to the street and starting putting in last names.

Cheryl Smith found her name on the list and found that she had $8,000 waiting.

Last year, 150,000 payments were made that totaled around $100 million.

It's not just money the state is holding for you. Inside the treasurer's vault, there are countless drawers of unclaimed property.

"We store them in the vault and then reach out the rightful owners," Pennsylvania Treasurer Vault Keeper Lori Hetrick said.

From abandoned safety deposit boxes to unclaimed estates, the items have arrived. Some of the items include a 12-carat pear-shaped diamond, a Willie Mays autographed baseball, jewelry by the score, a Barbie doll and even a solid gold bar.

The state will hold all of the items until they become auction eligible.

The eBay proceeds go into an account under the estate name.

So how do you claim what rightfully belongs to you?

That's actually the easy part. You can either go online and follow a few easy clicks, or give the operators a call at 1-800-222-2046.


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