JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missourians can donate unclaimed property held by state government directly to charities that support military veterans, medical research, children's education and other causes under a new program state Treasurer Clint Zweifel announced Wednesday.
The treasurer's office currently holds $810 million of unclaimed property belonging to 4.7 million account holders. Zweifel said people regularly have asked to donate their property to charity and that the new program will allow them to do so in a "quick, easy and simple" way. He announced the program during a news conference at the state Capitol.
Zweifel estimated that if everyone with a $50 claim donated half of it to charity that would raise $18 million for charity.
"While many of these claims are actually quite small, added together, they become large enough to make a serious impact on the lives of Missourians," he said.
Twenty charitable organizations are participating in the donation program, including the Missouri Military Family Relief Fund, Children's Trust Fund, American Red Cross and the March of Dimes.
Under Missouri law, financial institutions, insurance companies and others turn over assets belonging to customers and clients to the treasurer's office when there have been no transactions or contact with the owner for at least five years. Most of the unclaimed property is comprised of bank accounts, stocks, bonds and the contents safe deposit boxes.