Do you have some free money coming your way?

The Victorian treasurer has asked the state’s citizens to check with the Victorian Unclaimed Money Register, as there are currently tens of millions of dollars on the books.

“We encourage Victorians to check the website and claim their unclaimed monies – this could provide substantial benefits to people if they make the effort,” Tim Pallas said.

“If you are not sure, our advice is to go to the website and check.’’

Who is owed money?

Greater Geelong has the most unclaimed money – with more than 33,000 entitlements valued at over $4.3 million, followed by Ballarat (more than 14,000 entitlements, $1.8 million), Greater Bendigo (13,000, $1.8 million), Latrobe (13,000, $1.5 million), Greater Shepparton (9,000, $1.2 million) and Mildura (7,000, $1 million).

In metropolitan Melbourne, the City of Melbourne is the council area with the most unclaimed money – more than 67,000 entitlements worth over $17.7 million – followed by Boroondara ($9.8 million), Stonnington ($6.9 million) and Whitehorse ($6.6 million).

One Bendigo local has just over $137,000 waiting for them, while a lucky Box Hill individual has a claim to more than $880,000, someone from Nunawading is owed more than $670,000 and a person in Mount Martha can apply for more than $232,000.

You can check if you are owed money at Victoria’s State Revenue Office here.

It’s estimated there is more than $500 million in unclaimed money in NSW.  

All state governments hold unclaimed money from deceased estates, share dividends, salaries and wages, cheques, trust money, overpayments and proceeds of sale, to name a few.

Claiming costs nothing.

Where to find a windfall

If you think you are owed money, maybe from a wound-up company, or in long-lost shares, you will need to contact the state in which the money is held.

For deceased estates, state by state:

For dividends and other money:

According to MoneySmart, money is usually ‘lost’ when people move house and forget to update their details with a financial institution or company.

Bank accounts become unclaimed after seven years if the account is inactive and life insurance policies become unclaimed seven years after the policy matures and was not claimed.

MoneySmart said unclaimed money received by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) is transferred to the Commonwealth of Australia Consolidated Revenue Fund and can be claimed at any time by the owner. There is no time limit on claims.

Find out how to claim here.

Have you ever found money on an unclaimed register? Why not share your experience in the comments section below?

Also read: Credit card debt soars

Jan Fisher
Jan Fisher
Accomplished journalist, feature writer and sub-editor with impressive knowledge of the retirement landscape, including retirement income, issues that affect Australians planning and living in retirement, and answering YLC members' Age Pension and Centrelink questions. She has also developed a passion for travel and lifestyle writing and is fast becoming a supermarket savings 'guru'.
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