SPRINGFIELD– Christmas, Santa, Reindeer, Wreath, and Noel are among millions of names in Illinois’ unclaimed property database with cash and property available to them to claim, Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs said today.

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“This is a time of year when extra money and keepsakes are even more special to return to the rightful owner,” Frerichs said. “We have returned more than $1.3 billion in unclaimed property in the past five years with billions more to claim. Check our database at www.illinoistreasurer.gov/ICASH to find out if you have some extra holiday cash or property to claim.”

An estimated one-in-four people in Illinois who search find unclaimed property and the average claim is $1,000. Since 2015, $1.3 billion in unclaimed property has been returned, the most that has been returned in the program’s 58-year history. The $1.3 billion milestone was possible because Frerichs prioritized changes in technology, efficiency, and state law to streamline the unclaimed property process.

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Unclaimed property refers to money or accounts within financial institutions or companies in which there has been no activity for several years and the legal owner has not responded to inquiries by the business. In Illinois, the state treasurer is tasked with safeguarding unclaimed property, such as unpaid life insurance benefits, forgotten bank accounts, and unused rebate cards.

Because unclaimed property is reported to the treasurer’s office twice a year, it is recommended individuals check the database every six months.

About the Illinois Treasurer

As Illinois State Treasurer, Michael Frerichs is the state’s Chief Investment and Banking Officer and actively manages approximately $52 billion. The portfolio includes $27 billion in state funds, $16 billion in retirement and college savings plans, and $9 billion on behalf of local and state governments. Frerichs’ office protects consumers by safeguarding more than $3.5 billion in unclaimed property, encouraging savings plans for college or trade school, increasing financial education among all ages, assisting people with disabilities save without losing government benefits, and removing barriers to a secure retirement. The Treasurer’s Office predates Illinois incorporation in 1818. Voters in 1848 chose to make it an elected office.

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