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Unclaimed Property Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently asked questions about Unclaimed Property.

Unclaimed Property

How Does the Abandoned Property Law work?

What is the Unclaimed Property Act?

How long must an account be dormant before it is considered abandoned?

What happens to abandoned property that remains unclaimed?

Who may claim abandoned property?

What is the claim process?

What should I do if someone offers to help me locate unclaimed money for a fee?

Is there a time limit for claiming my property?

Is there a charge for claiming my property?

Do I need to appear in person to claim my property?

Where can I find a notary public?

Does the State simply go in and take the money?

Does Abandoned Property include Real Estate?

back to topHow Does the Abandoned Property Law work?

NH RSA 471C is the law regarding abandoned and unclaimed property and how you can recover it. One example is when a financial institution holds your money in an account, and there has been no owner initiated account activity, or you have not communicated regarding the account for a period of five years, the institution presumes it is abandoned. At this point the institution reports and remits it to the State Treasurer who acts as custodian of the property. The reported owners name is advertised statewide in a newspaper and a notice is sent to the owners last known address as reported. Upon establishing ownership you may reclaim your property from the Treasury Abandoned Property Division.

back to topWhat is the Unclaimed Property Act?

The Unclaimed Property Act provides for the identification, recovery, and safeguard of dormant accounts or forgotten properties and their return to the rightful owner(s).

back to topHow long must an account be dormant before it is considered abandoned?

In New Hampshire most property types are presumed abandoned or unclaimed if there has been no account activity for five (5) years. However, wages, payroll or salary and utility deposits are presumed abandoned or unclaimed after one (1) year.

back to topWhat happens to abandoned property that remains unclaimed?

Within three (3) years of being reported the money is transferred to the states' General Fund and in part to the various County Treasurers, helping to reduce some of the individual tax burdens. However, the rightful owner retains the right to claim the property and this right is never lost.

back to topWho may claim abandoned property?

The reported owner, estate, lawful heir, or duly authorized representative.

What is the claim process?

Filing a claim form and presenting documentation to establish your identity and ownership of the property is required. For further information and to obtain a claim form contact the Division of Abandoned Property.

back to topWhat should I do if someone offers to help me locate unclaimed money for a fee?

Call our office first (800) 791-0920 (NH only) or (603) 271-2619. Signing an agreement to have someone assist you in recovering unclaimed property may require the payment of substantial fees. Such an agreement is unenforceable in New Hampshire if it covers property which has been in the State's custody for 24 months or less. (See NH RSA471-C:39)

back to topIs there a time limit for claiming my property?

No. The State only acts as custodian for the money until the rightful owner comes forward to claim it.

Is there a charge for claiming my property?

No. The money is available to you at no charge. However, in the case of liquidation or re-registration of securities there is a nominal processing fee of $20.00.

back to topDo I need to appear in person to claim my property?

Not necessarily. Most claims can be processed by mail.

back to topWhere can I find a notary public?

Check with your local bank, insurance company, attorney's office, county, city or town offices.

back to topDoes the State simply go in and take the money?

No. The statute is in place to protect your property. It requires holders of properties to account for them and deliver them to the Treasury. Unclaimed property is remitted to the State only after two things have occurred:

  1. There has been no activity on the account for the applicable dormancy period, and
  2. The holder has attempted to contact the owner at the last known address.

If these are unsuccessful, then the money is remitted to the State.

back to topDoes Abandoned Property Include Real Estate?

No. The Unclaimed and Abandoned Property Law applies only to intangibles such as the accounts described elsewhere herein. The law does not apply to land, buildings or other tangible property.


New Hampshire State Treasury
25 Capitol Street, Room 121  |  Concord, NH 03301
(603) 271-2621  |  fax: (603) 271-3922
Abandoned Property:
(800) 791-0920 (in New Hampshire)  |  
(603) 271-2619