Ever wonder what happens to the money in people’s bank accounts after they move out of town, die, or switch banks? Well the funds eventually go to the government 🙂
If a bank account becomes dormant for 10 years and the bank has already made 3 attempts to contact the owner but failed, then the unclaimed money is transferred to our Central Bank. The Bank of Canada holds on to this money for 30 more years on amounts of less than $1,000, before it is given to the federal government as general revenue, which can then be spent on anything the government decides. Amounts over $1,000 however are held for 100 years before it goes into the federal coffers for good.
But here’s the good news. While the funds are still with the Bank of Canada, the original owners can still reclaim their money. For example, if you opened a savings account when you were little and had forgotten about it until now, you can get your money back 🙂 Finding forgotten funds is easy. Just go to the central bank’s website, type in your name, and province, and see if you have money waiting for you to claim 😀
In 2006, the federal government took in $3.9 million from more than 60,000 dormant accounts. Each unclaimed account will eventually mean more money for the government to spend on public services. Maybe you know a friend, or relative who passed away, or moved to another country but didn’t bother to close their bank accounts. Just punch in their name and if the Bank of Canada has their money, it can be redeemed.
In total the Bank of Canada says at the end of December 2013, it had about 1.4 million unclaimed balances, worth $532 million, on its books. Who knows, maybe one of those accounts is yours 🙂
Random Useless Fact: Strawberries are the only fruit which seeds grow on the outside