Found Money For a Fee? Protect Yourself Against Unclaimed Property Scams

The email may look legitimate and the message is enticing: An individual purportedly representing a government agency or law firm has identified you as the rightful recipient of a tidy sum of money from an outstanding estate or long forgotten funds sitting in a financial institution.  All you have to do is provide them with some personal information, pay an upfront fee, and the money is all yours. Before you […]

More Than $159 Million Sitting in Dormant Accounts in B.C. Looking for a Home

According to annual financial statements from the  B.C. Unclaimed Property Society (BCUPS), there is now more than $159 million in unclaimed money sitting in orphaned accounts in the province looking for a home. Thousands of B.C. residents have forgotten funds languishing in inactive credit union accounts, as well as unpaid wages, overpayments to debt collectors, proceeds from courts, pension funds, estates and real estate deposits. In 2018, BCUPS received $6,115,202 […]

Claimant Profile: Elusive Unclaimed Wages Finds a Home

The amount of unclaimed funds in the BCUPS database has been increasing by about 10 percent a year over the last five years.  Individuals who previously searched the BCUPS online database without any luck may find years later that funds from a long-forgotten account or unpaid wages are now theirs to be claimed. That was the case with a Vancouver donor relations professional who discovered she had unclaimed wages waiting […]

BCUPS’s Social Philanthropy Business Model Support the Public Good

  One of the most distinctive aspects of British Columbia’s unclaimed property program is that it has a philanthropic component to it.  Each year, a portion of BCUPS’ outstanding unclaimed funds are transferred to Vancouver Foundation for philanthropic purposes. Last year, $2.8 million was transferred to Vancouver Foundation to support community programs. Since 2004, BCUPS has transferred more than $35.8 million to Vancouver Foundation, which manages an endowment of $1.2 […]

Unclaimed Property in BC Tops $150 Million – June 2018

Over the last four years, the amount of unclaimed property sitting in dormant accounts in British Columbia has increased by more than 50%. Today, the BCUPS searchable database lists approximately $151 million in unclaimed funds, compared to approximately $100 million in 2014. “There’s a growing awareness among companies and organizations of their regulatory obligation to remit unclaimed funds to the BC Unclaimed Property Society,” explains Alena Levitz, Executive Director of […]

University of British Columbia’s Unclaimed Property Disclosure Serves as a Model for Other Organizations

  It’s a common problem facing most post-secondary educational institutions with a mobile workforce. Visiting scholars, sessional instructors, student employees and other part-time-temporary workers come and go forgetting to pick up their final paycheque, often leaving no forwarding address, contact or banking information. This was the situation facing the University of British Columbia. A review of payroll operations in the fall of 2016 uncovered approximately 15,000 paper cheques that employees […]