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You Could be Entitled to a Share in $1.2 Billion of Unclaimed Money

Greg Medcraft
11th July, 2016

There are around 1.3 million records of unclaimed money from dormant bank accounts, life insurance, shares and other investments waiting to be claimed by its rightful owners.

Our MoneySmart website provides guidance on how to find unclaimed money. In the last financial year, more than 25,000 people made successful claims with $158.4 million paid out.

You may find you have unclaimed money if you:

  • have moved house without leaving a forwarding address;
  • haven’t made a transaction on your cheque or savings account for seven years;
  • have stopped making payments on a life insurance policy;
  • have noticed that a regular dividend or interest cheques have stopped coming; or
  • were the executor of a deceased estate.

Bank accounts become unclaimed after 7 years if the account is inactive (e.g. no deposits or withdrawals). Life insurance policies become unclaimed 7 years after the policy matures and is not claimed.

After 7 years, any unclaimed money is transferred to the Commonwealth and managed by ASIC. This money can be claimed by its rightful owner with no time limits on claims.

How much unclaimed money is available?

There is $1.2 billion of unclaimed money available in inactive bank accounts, life insurance policies and shares waiting to be claimed, as listed below by state and territory. (Mobile users, swipe left to view the table.)

State / Territory Bank accounts Life insurance policies Shares & other investments
 New South Wales  $208m  $26m $153m
 Victoria  $128m  $16m  $59m
 Queensland $65m  $10m  $38m
 Western Australia  $47m  $5m  $26m
 South Australia  $18m  $5m $12m
 ACT $7m  $1m  $6m
 Northern Territory  $5m $0.6m $3m
 Tasmania  $5m  $1m $2m

Use ASIC’s MoneySmart website to search for unclaimed money

You can do a quick and free search of unclaimed money records on ASIC’s MoneySmart website to see if you are entitled to a share of the unclaimed money.

The MoneySmart website also provides information on how to make a claim. If the record you locate is listed as ‘banking’ or ‘life insurance’ you will need to contact the institution who originally provided the unclaimed money (e.g. your bank) to make your claim. If the record you locate is listed as ‘company’, you will need to go to to the ‘claim money from shares and investments‘ on ASIC’s MoneySmart website.

It’s free, quick and easy to use ASIC’s MoneySmart website to search for unclaimed money for yourself, a family member, colleague or friend.

If you find you have unclaimed money, you can utilise ASIC’s MoneySmart financial calculators and apps to make the most of your money and help achieve your financial goals.

Greg Medcraft is Chairman of Australian Securities and Investments Commission

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