SALEM, OR (KPTV) - The state of Oregon has hundreds of millions of dollars of unclaimed property right now, and some of it could be yours.
But it’s not only cash. It could be valuable or sentimental items that you or a loved one forgot about or left behind.
“This is what we think is a ceremonial Asian pipe,” said Anay Hausner.
It’s a treasure trove of items, inside a vault at the Oregon Department of State Lands.
“This is a beauty,” said Hausner. “This is an original Roosevelt presidential pin.”
Hausner is a self-proclaimed history buff.
“This ring is most likely from the 30’s or 40’s, custom designed for someone who was in the turquoise industry,” Hausner showed FOX 12.
She's also the Securities Coordinator at the Department of State Lands.
“You get a glimpse into someone’s life,” she said.
That means she’s in charge of the more than 1,000 safety security boxes that come in every year from places like banks, hospitals or law offices.
“So, when I go to open a box in a box that then opens into a bag, it’s exciting,” said Hausner. “It’s exhilarating.”
“It’s like what is in here,” Hausner continued. “It’s like a Christmas present, and you either get the reaction of 'oh boy' or you get the reaction of 'oh, this is interesting.'”
All of it is part of the department’s Unclaimed Property Program.
“Unclaimed property can be anything from an uncashed payroll check, to money that’s left over at a bank account, to a rental deposit that people forgot about, or a safe deposit box that they may have not paid their rent on, or securities, gift cards,” said Trust property Manager at the Department of State Lands, Claudia Ciobanu. “Pretty much anything that’s prepaid and not used or it’s held in custody or people forget about it.”
Right now, the state is holding more than $600 million in unclaimed property.
That means you could have cash or valuables in the vault waiting for you.
“I think just the numbers there show us that there are quite a few people who are not aware of it,” said Ciobanu. “I know when I took this job, I wasn’t aware of it and we looked up everybody in my family and they had property.”
Finding out if you have property to claim is easy. First, head over to the unclaimed property site to search your or a family member’s name. If something’s there, you will then need to file a claim with the state and prove it’s you.
“I think it wasn’t that long ago that we issued some checks for over $100,000 or even a quarter million dollars,” said Ciobanu.
The money sits there until it’s claimed. Interest from the money, though, is given to the Common School Fund. The last distribution for that was $58 million.
Again, click here, if you would like to search for any unclaimed property.
It’s also a good idea to check any other states you’ve lived in and check regularly.
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