Unclaimed Property Program

The State of California is currently in possession of more than 8 billion unclaimed property, owned by approximately 32.5 million individuals and organizations.

California law requires corporations, businesses, associations, financial institutions, and insurance companies (referred to as “holders”) to annually report and deliver property to the State Controller’s Office if there has been no activity on the account or contact with the owner for a specified period of time (generally three years). California unclaimed property law does not include real estate.

Contact is often lost when the owner forgets the account exists or moves and does not leave a forwarding address. In some cases, the owner dies with heirs who have no knowledge of the property.

The most common types of unclaimed property are:

  • Bank accounts and safe deposit box contents
  • Stocks, mutual funds, bonds, and dividends
  • Uncashed cashier’s checks and money orders
  • Certificates of deposit
  • Matured or terminated insurance policies
  • Estates
  • Mineral interests and royalty payments
  • Trust funds and escrow accounts
  • Utility account deposits

Unclaimed property is returned to owners in the form of a check from the state.

For more information and to search if you have unclaimed property, visit the State Controller's Office's page on Unclaimed Property.