Every time you find money, whether it's in an old pair of pants or between the couch cushions, you're overcome with euphoric joy.
Your money isn't just lost in the small cracks of the family home; it's also out in the world and there are a number of ways you can find it without relying on chance. Throughout the U.S., there are billions of unclaimed dollars being held by the government and lingering within different financial channels.
Just on the Komando.com team alone, one of us found several thousand dollars for one of our parents, and another found a couple hundred from an auto insurance premium refund 10 years ago. DO NOT PAY anyone to search for unclaimed funds; you can do this easily by following the advice below.
Update: Got 7 minutes? Watch this call from The Kim Komando Show where Robert from Harrisonburg, Virginia, called to thank Kim for helping him and his family find more than $25,000 in unclaimed funds after reading this story. The best part: Hear how quickly the state sent him his unclaimed funds!
How to find money that belongs to you
Finding money and unclaimed property that may be yours is a relatively simple task. All 50 states have independent treasury websites that can help you find it. For example, if you live or lived in North Carolina, you can go to www.nctreasurer.com, click the "Claim your NC Cash" tab and select "search for your unclaimed property."
Once all of your selections are made, the website asks for some basic information and will assist you in finding property that may be claimed in the state.
To find the link for your states treasury website, go to Google and type (Unclaimed funds + States Name). However, be cautious in your search. There are plenty of scammers on the internet and going to the wrong site could lead to trouble. Again, if anyone tries to charge you money to search for or obtain unclaimed funds, don't do it.
PRO TIP: If you have a name that is frequently misspelled or has variations that are often confused (Schmid, Schmidt, Schmitt), search those misspellings on the unclaimed funds sites as well. You never know!
One site that searches all unclaimed funds sites
If you reside or have lived in more than one state, a website such as MissingMoney will be a great tool for you to use.
MissingMoney is a free government search site for your missing money. All the site asks for is your name and your resident state(s).
Odds are, you aren't the only person in the country with the same name. That being said, once you input your information the site will show you all the possible options of unclaimed money for people with your name. It requires some sifting through, but, there's a possibility your money is laying dormant somewhere.
Despite this, the website does require you to enter the state or province in which you lived; refining your search a bit.
Although a number of possible matches may pop-up, each name has an individual link to the states' claim website.
Visiting treasury sites and and other outlets, like MissingMoney, are great ways to find unclaimed money. However, there are a plethora of different ways for you to search for funds that belong to you. Keep reading and we'll tell you about a few of them.
Search for unclaimed tax refund money
If for some reason you didn't receive a proper tax return because you moved, you can file a claim to the IRS to update them on your new address. Additionally, if an employer withholds funds from you, the IRS gives you up to 3 years to submit a claim to collect money you are owed.
If you haven't moved, and you're just curious where your refund is, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can explain exactly where it is and when you should expect to receive it.
Look for retirement funds
Everyone's financial plan for retirement is different. However, almost anyone who worked for a company that provided one can receive some money. If you moved on from your employer who provided benefits or a retirement plan, you may still be eligible to get some, if not all the money that was contributed. Pension plans and retirement benefits are controlled by different governmental sectors. If you need to search for what money you are entitled to, you can find either online.
The National Registry of Unclaimed Retirement Benefits will help you find money being held from prior employers, while the Pension Benefit Guarenty Corporation can assist in your search for money tied into pension plans.
Collect your earnings
You may not know it, but money that is rightfully yours may be out there somewhere. But, be wary of the dangers that may be present when searching for unclaimed money.
Despite the possible concerns that may present themselves while searching for funds, you owe it to yourself to find the money that belongs to you.
Still using a driver's license for travel? Better get this soon
Anyone living in the U.S. knows that air travel can be a pain. Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse, the federal government is setting its sights on travelers using their driver's license to fly. New travel ID requirements are set to finalize in 2020. If you don't have one of these new-edition licences, you may need to grab your passport if you want to fly domestically.