United Way of Greater Topeka cashes in on unclaimed property search

Capitol Bureau

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – There are millions of dollars going unclaimed in Kansas. When the leader at United Way of Greater Topeka looked online if the organization had any, she was pleased to find a $1,096 gift from a group outside the state.

“It’s quick, it’s easy, and yeah, it can be a great little surprise,” said Jessica Lehnherr, the organization’s CEO.

You can check if you have any unclaimed property here.

Lehnherr said the money that was found will go a long way in helping out local charities.

“Keeps us going, it helps us help our community more in providing more support and more services in all of the many areas that we support, so yeah, we, 100 percent, need those donations, and now is a really important time,” she said.

The state treasurer’s office is in charge of getting $400 million of unclaimed property to Kansans.

Money can come from places like bank accounts, stocks, refunds, and paychecks. It could be because people have changed addresses or another reason an organization can’t get in contact with the rightful owner.

“They get turned over to the state then it’s our job to return those to Kansans as fast as we can, and as often, and as much as we can,” said State Treasurer Lynn Rogers. “In most cases, for smaller transactions, it can be sent out just in a couple days.”

In the past few years, the office has made an effort to make more people aware of the unclaimed money. Some may be worried that the process is time-consuming or checking for money could end up costing them, but Rogers says that’s not the case.

“We do check to see if there’s money owed against those people if it is, that gets used to pay that debt, but that’s the extent of it, but we’ll partner with the department of revenue, but if it’s their money, we want to get it back to them,” Rogers said.

Since January 4, the average claim amount is nearly $200.

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