Do I have to hire a paid professional finder to claim my unclaimed funds?
No, you can claim your funds from the Ohio Division of Unclaimed Funds on your own, without hiring a finder. Anyone can claim unclaimed funds by submitting to the Division a claim form, along with the required proof of ownership and authority to recover the funds. Division staff members will assist you throughout the claims process and are available to answer your questions. Before entering into a contract with any finder, contact the Division to make sure the finder is registered under Ohio law to assist you in recovering funds held by the Department of Commerce.
Does a professional finder have to be licensed or registered to operate in the State of Ohio?
Yes. Under Ohio law, persons engaged in activity for the purpose of locating, delivering, recovering or assisting in the recovery of unclaimed funds, on behalf of another person, in exchange for a fee, compensation, commission or other remuneration, must hold a valid Certificate of Registration from the Director of Commerce. It is illegal for finders to operate without the required Certificate of Registration. You can find out if a finder is registered by contacting the division through our online form.
How much may a finder charge for assisting in a claim?
Under Ohio law, a finder is not permitted to charge more than 10% of the total amount claimed.
How does the unclaimed funds process work if I decide to hire a paid professional finder?
Finder’s agreements must contain specified information under Ohio law. After a person signs an agreement with a finder, the finder must submit the agreement to the Division for determination that all requirements are met. Among other requirements the agreement must specify: The nature and value of the unclaimed funds; the amount the owner of the funds will receive after the finder’s fee or compensation is subtracted; a statement that the State of Ohio will pay the unclaimed funds directly to the owner; a statement that the finder is not an employee or agent of the Department of Commerce; a statement that the Commerce director is not a party to the agreement; a statement that the finder holds a valid Certificate of Registration issued by the Commerce Director; and the registration certificate number and expiration date. If the agreement between the finder and the owner of the unclaimed funds meets all requirements, the Division sends the claim form to the finder. The finder or the property owner later returns the original, signed form to the Division for processing, along with the proof of ownership. If proof requirements are met, the Division processes the claim and sends payment of the unclaimed funds to the owner of the unclaimed property. It is the owner’s responsibility to pay the finder. Ohio Administrative Code.
How do I report illegal finder activity?
To report illegal finding activity, contact the Division by using our contact form or writing the Division at Ohio Department of Commerce, Division of Unclaimed Funds, 77 S. High Street, 20th Floor, Columbus, OH 43215. Complaints or inquiries may also be submitted on our contact us page.