How Assets Become Lost

Most people or businesses lose an asset as a result of a Change of Address: either the owner moved, there was a name change due to the owner getting married or divorced, or a death of the owner and the heirs were unaware of the money or the heirs could not be located. Sometimes the owner knows about the asset but is unaware that it has been lost or removed as the rightful owner of that property.

For Example, Here Are A Few Of The Most Common Scenarios In Which You Could “Misplace” Your Money And Not Even Know About It:

  • Perhaps you moved and forgot to claim your security deposit.
  • Perhaps the utility company owed you a refund check or a refund of your deposit, and you forgot to inform them of your new address.
  • Perhaps the dividend checks from your stock or mutual fund have been going to the wrong address.
  • Perhaps you moved your money to a new bank, but forgot about an account or safe deposit box you left with the old bank. Maybe you left a little money in the checking account to be safe, and forgot about it.
  • Perhaps you have a certificate of deposit with a bank that has seen no activity for five years. If you let it roll over and ignore the bank’s mail, it could be declared lost.
  • Perhaps a long lost relative died without a will, and its taken years for the courts to settle the estate.
  • Perhaps a relative died and the insurance company took a while to send the check for the proceeds of the life insurance policy. Or the life insurance company may have undergone a de-mutualization and was unable to find the current address of the policyholder.
  • Perhaps you simply forgot about some money owed you.

To prevent your property from getting lost, you should keep an up-to-date list of all your family’s assets, including bank accounts, certificates of deposit, mortgage escrow accounts, retirement accounts (IRA, Keogh, and 401(k)), layaway’s, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, life insurance policies, security deposits, and safe deposit boxes. If you change your name or address, write to the address associated with each asset to notify them of the change. Likewise, if you regularly receive insurance benefits or dividends, and the checks stop coming, this is a sign to promptly notify the company of the problem.

For more information on how the Reese CPA Firm can assist you to recover assets that may belong to you, contact Mark Reese, CPA, at 952-451-3092, or email him at