Michigan Treasury holding unclaimed property worth millions of dollars

President Donald Trump's name appears on the coronavirus economic assistance checks that were sent to citizens across the country April 29, 2020 in Washington, D.C. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Hiding in bank accounts, uncashed checks, and safety deposit boxes in Michigan are millions of dollars in unclaimed property just waiting to be returned to its rightful owner. 

According to the Michigan Treasury Department, residents have yet to claim millions of dollars in valuables that had been turned over to the state once it was determined they had been abandoned.

In an effort to return the valuable goods, the state is kicking off Feb. 1 as National Unclaimed Property Day.

"I encourage everyone to check to see if they have forgotten or abandoned property," State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks said. "Our Unclaimed Property staff are standing by and ready to reunite these assets with their rightful owners or heirs."

According to the state, the treasury department acts as the custodian of the assets as it works to reunite them with their owners and owners' heirs. 

How to search for Michigan unclaimed properties

The state of Michigan's unclaimed property site is very simple to use. You just need to enter your last name or the name of your business. If you have a common last name (like Smith, Jones, or Williams) it may be helpful to enter your first name as well.

Peopel can access the site by heading to UCPday.com or straight to the treasury's website: https://unclaimedproperty.michigan.gov/

You can then narrow your search results by city and zip code to make sure you find the right property. Then click search.

Exact matches will be shown first on the next screen.

All properties are either $50 or more, stock proceeds, or tangible items such as safe deposit box contents.

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How to claim your property

If you find property or money that belongs to you, just click the "Claim" button next to your name.

Then move your mouse to the 'Continue to file claim" button. A dropdown will appear with another button that reads "Review claimed properties. Click that button and you can see which properties are waiting for you to claim

You'll have to declare if you are claiming it for yourself, your business, or someone else and then click file claim.

The state will then ask you for your contact information and more details in order to return your property.

After you've initiated your claim, you'll receive documentation from the Department of Treasury with a claim ID.

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Documents needed to claim Michigan property

Once you've made your claim, you'll have to upload documentation to the state to prove that you are who you say you are.

The documents must be standard file types (PDF, TIF, PNG or JPG) and must be less than 10 MB.

When you upload images, be sure to trim out excess portions like a white background. Some claims may require original documents and cannot be uploaded.

If in doubt, refer to your claim form to determine what kind of documentation is needed.

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How to search for your claim

Once you've made a claim and have not received your property, you can track the status. 

After you've submitted your claim, you'll get a claim ID. Make sure you hang on to that as you'll need it to search on the state's page. 

The state says some claims could take up to five approvals before the property is released so you're encouraged to check back once you have your claim ID.