Staff from the Wyoming Treasurer’s office will be in Laramie on Thursday, hosting two meetings as part of an effort to reunite Wyoming residents with about $85 million in money held by the state that’s owed to residents and businesses.
Of the money held by the treasurer’s office, $4.1 million is “tied” to Albany County, according to Jeff Robertson, administrator of the state’s Unclaimed Property Division. That means the rightful owner’s last known address lies within Albany County.
The treasurer’s office also has $8 million owned to people without a listed address.
“Some of that could be tied to individuals in the county as well,” Robertson said.
The treasurer’s office acquires money as “unclaimed property” when a business or individual has an account payable that’s unresolved for five years.
“Sometimes, a check gets lost in the mail somewhere or a business forgets to cash a check,” Robertson said.
Payroll, securities, mineral royalties and bank funds are just a few examples of money that can end up as unclaimed property, Robertson said.
“Some of the bigger claims are life insurance polices where they don’t know how to get a hold of the beneficiaries,” he said.
In recent years, the treasurer’s office has been working to reunite more Wyomingites with owed funds.
In the 2019 fiscal year, the state paid out $6.8 million worth of unclaimed property. That was a record, as was the number of individual checks issued: 6,000. The previous record was 4,500, Robertson said.
The treasurer’s office has implemented new software and procedures that have led to about 85% of money reported in the past three years to the Unclaimed Property Division to be reunited with its rightful owner.
Wyomingites can search their names or businesses at www.mycash.wyo.gov to see if they’re owed any money.
That website also allows people to file a claim for money.
The level of documentation required to process a claim varies.
“No matter what the claim, we have to have some sort of ID,” Robertson said. “From there, it depends.”
If the state’s software is unable to link the claimant to the rightful owner’s last known address, the Unclaimed Property Division might require a utility bill or some other documentation that’s evidence the claimant is the same person as the listed rightful owner.
On Thursday, Unclaimed Property Division staff will give a presentation at 10 a.m. at the Eppson Center for Seniors about the division’s operations.
From 2-4 p.m. that same day, Robertson and other officials will be that the Albany County Commissioners’ chambers in the basement of the county courthouse to help residents file and find claims.