90-Year-Old Naples Resident Cashes in on Substantial Unclaimed Property
NAPLES –Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink today met with 90-year-old Naples resident Hildegard Hudson, the recipient of a substantial amount of unclaimed funds from the State of Florida’s Bureau of Unclaimed Property. Hudson, who immigrated from Germany at the age of 18 with eleven cents in her pocket, received a ceremonial warrant for her unclaimed funds at the Options Thrift Shoppe in Naples, where she volunteers regularly.
“I’m so glad we were able to find Hudson and help her get her money back,” said CFO Sink, who oversees the Bureau. “I encourage all Floridians to visit our Web site at www.FLTreasureHunt.org. With nearly eight million accounts, the chances are good we are holding cash or property for you or someone you know.”
“I want to thank the state of Florida and our Chief Financial Officer for being so diligent, because it could have taken a very long time,” said Hudson. “They were very helpful and I hope everyone double checks to see if the state has found their money.”
Since the program's inception 46 years ago, the Bureau has successfully reunited owners with more than $1.2 billion in unclaimed property. During Alex Sink’s tenure as CFO, the Bureau has successfully reunited owners with more than $406 million, which is thirty-four percent of all the money returned since the beginning of the program – due largely to aggressive efforts by the program to contact owners.
The Bureau is currently holding 7.8 million accounts, mostly from dormant accounts in financial institutions, unclaimed utility deposits, insurance benefits, premium refunds, uncashed checks and trust accounts, as well as watches, jewelry, coins, stamps and historical items from abandoned safe deposit boxes. Unclaimed property can be claimed for free at any time by the rightful owners or heirs by logging on to www.fltreasurehunt.org or by calling the Bureau at 1-888-VALUABLE. Until claimed, the unclaimed funds are transferred to the state’s School Trust Fund to benefit public schools. Since the program’s inception in 1961, more than $1.5 billion has been transferred to the fund. .
As a statewide elected officer of the Florida Cabinet, Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink oversees the Department of Financial Services, a multi-division state agency responsible for management of state funds and unclaimed property, assisting consumers who request information and help related to financial services, and investigating financial fraud. CFO Sink also serves as the State Fire Marshal.
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