January 2024 │ Legislation & Regulation Update

Compiled by:
Suzanne Darling

The Unclaimed Property Legislative Alert

Summary of Legislation — Week Ending January 26, 2024

HAWAII: Senate Bill 2130.  Introduced legislation requires that a financial organization holder shall, in addition to giving notice to the apparent owner of presumed abandoned property, give notice to each person listed in the holder’s records as potentially having an interest in the property.      

IOWA: Prefiled #5342. Introduced legislation requires the Treasurer to adopt rules for delivery, transfer, maintenance, and sale of abandoned virtual currency.  A holder that sells virtual currency at the Treasurer’s direction is indemnified so long as the holder complied with notice requirements and acted in good faith.  The holder shall notify the owner of securities, a brokerage account, or virtual currency that the property may be liquidated and that any claim will be limited to the proceeds thereafter.  The Treasurer may waive the claim requirement and pay a person directly in certain circumstances.

NEW JERSEY: Assembly Bill 3283. Introduced legislation requires that a portion of unclaimed electric, gas, and water public utility deposits be paid to a statewide nonprofit organization for the purpose of assisting ratepayers with utility service termination or restoration.

SOUTH CAROLINA: House Bill 4943. Introduced legislation provides that when no disbursements have been made from any fund in a trust for five years, the funds are unclaimed property.  

SOUTH DAKOTA: House Bill 1118. Introduced legislation specifies that money is continuously appropriated to the Unclaimed Property Trust Fund to pay claims while operational expenses must be paid from general appropriations.

VERMONT: House Bill 839. Introduced legislation requires the liquidation of virtual currency within 30 days of remittance to the state as unclaimed property.  The owner shall have no recourse against the holder or the Administrator for any gain in value after liquidation.


Summary of Legislation — Week Ending January 19, 2024

NEBRASKA: Legislative Bill 1332. Introduced legislation prohibits fees and expiration dates on prepaid cards and requires that the card issuer redeem a prepaid card in cash if the cash value is $10 or less, with certain exceptions.  

NEW JERSEY: Senate Bill 112. Introduced legislation requires that a portion of unclaimed electric and gas public utility deposits be paid to a statewide nonprofit organization for the purpose of assisting ratepayers with utility service termination or restoration.

NEW JERSEY: Senate Bill 152. Introduced legislation provides that amounts remaining in inactive internet gaming accounts for three years are unclaimed property.

SOUTH DAKOTA: House Bill 1090. Introduced legislation provides that surplus proceeds from a tax sale that cannot be returned to the prior property owner must be transferred to the Unclaimed Property Division.

WEST VIRGINIA: House Bill 4837 and Senate Bill 454. Introduced legislation amending the Uniform Commercial Code provides that an action to enforce a demand, savings, or time deposit, including an automatically renewable time deposit, is barred when the property is deemed abandoned; provided, however, that an action to enforce the obligation of a demand, savings, or time deposit, including an automatically renewable time deposit, brought more than 10 years after the initial maturity date shall be presumed to have been paid and redeemed unless there is evidence of: (1) owner consent to renewal in a record on file with the holder at or about the time of renewal; or (2) escheatment in accordance with the unclaimed property law. Other provisions tie liability on certain negotiable instruments to the length of time the bank is required to retain records and abandonment of the property pursuant to the unclaimed property law.


Summary of Legislation — Week Ending January 12, 2024

IOWA: House File 2036. Introduced legislation defines a “chamber buck” as a gift certificate offered by a local chamber of commerce for redemption by a local business.  Property held by a banking or financial organization deposited as part of a chamber buck program is not subject to abandonment.  This Act applies retroactively to July 1, 2014.

VIRGINIA: House Bill 264 (prefiled). Introduced legislation provides that a notice or advertisement required by law to be published in a newspaper may instead be published in an online-only news publication that meets specified requirements and has received authorization from the appropriate circuit court.

WASHINGTON: Senate Bill 5987 (prefiled). Introduced legislation provides that a gift certificate with a remaining balance of less than $50 (increased from $5) is redeemable in cash upon demand.  A reloadable gift certificate is reloadable in any amount up to an established maximum set by the issuer.  The bearer of a gift certificate may combine the certificate with other payment forms as needed to make a purchase.  

WASHINGTON: Senate Bill 6162. Introduced legislation limits locator fees to five percent of the value returned to the owner in the case of certain property held by a county.  A violation of this section is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment.  

WEST VIRGINIA: House Bill 4165 and Senate Bill 121. Introduced legislation authorizes the State Treasurer to promulgate previously proposed amendments to existing rules relating to the reporting of abandoned mineral interests under the Unknown and Unlocatable Interest Owners Act.

Summary of Legislation — Week Ending January 5, 2024

FLORIDA: House Bill 989. Proposed legislation establishes a five-year dormancy period for virtual currency and requires that the holder liquidate the property within 30 days of reporting it to the Administrator.  Upon delivery, the holder is relieved of all liability for losses or damage.  The dormancy period for securities is the earliest of three years after date of last activity, three years after date of death, or one year after notice of death if notice is received not more than two years after death and the holder lacked knowledge of the death during the two-year period.  Aggregate reporting is reduced to $10.  The 10-year period of limitations is tolled by the earlier of delivery of a notice of examination or the holder’s written election to enter into a voluntary disclosure agreement.  Financial or proprietary information of a holder compiled in an audit may be considered trade secret and exempt information as provided by law.     

ILLINOIS: House Bill 4320. Proposed legislation requires a trustee in possession of documentation about unclaimed property that could be needed to support a claim to check with the State Treasurer as to whether any unclaimed property is being held before the documentation is destroyed. 
OKLAHOMA: Senate Bill 1534. Proposed legislation requires the reporting of names and addresses of all payees, payors, and purchasers of a cashier’s check, if known.  No due diligence is required if a holder previously attempted to communicate with an owner, including by electronic communication initiated by the apparent owner. 

WASHINGTON: House Bill 2095 (prefiled). Proposed legislation abolishes the exemption for gift certificates/gift cards with certain exceptions.  The dormancy period is three years after the card becomes payable or distributable and the amount reportable is the card value at date of abandonment.  Due diligence is required for property valued at $50 (reduced from $75) or more.

Summary of Regulations — Week Ending January 5, 2024

FLORIDA: Rule 69G-20.0021 F.A.C. (effective January 9, 2024). Final regulations amend procedures for payment and delivery of approved claims to cash property, securities property, and tangible property.  Among the options for payment of cash property is payment by stored value product or account.  Securities that can be liquidated will be sold as soon as practicable and claims paid as cash property.  Securities that cannot be liquidated will be electronically transferred to the claimant’s securities account or registered in the claimant’s name and mailed to the claimant.  Securities that cannot be sold, certificated, or electronically transferred will not be paid or delivered.  Tangible property will be shipped to the claimant by common carrier, made available for pick-up by common carrier, or made available for pick-up by the claimant at the Department’s offices depending on property value and other factors.

OHIO: Ohio Administrative Code 1301: 10-2-02 and 1301: 10-4-01 (effective January 2, 2024). Final regulations repeal a provision allowing submission of a written request for a hearing within 180 days from the filing of a claim if the Director fails to act.  In addition, the 120-day period for claim review by the Director is classified as an initial review. 

With The Unclaimed Property Legislative Alert Summary of Legislation and Regulation, you receive an overview of the latest information on unclaimed property legislative updates, regulatory changes, and statutory amendments across the United States and Canada. The publicly available information contained herein has been compiled by Kelmar Associates, LLC and does not constitute legal advice or analysis of any kind.  The summary information is generally compiled on a weekly basis, as applicable, and is shared on Kelmar's website each month. For more information, please refer to each state unclaimed property bill.