Have you checked your bank account lately? Did you wish, by some miracle, you had even just a few hundred extra dollars hidden away somewhere? It turns out plenty of people already do — and you might be one of them.
Whether you forgot to formally file a tax return or there’s unclaimed insurance money with your name on it, Americans across the country are entitled to cash they don’t even know exists. Here’s why Steven Spielberg, Donald Trump, and even you might technically deserve to be just a little bit richer.
Steven Spielberg has $10,000 in unclaimed funds …
Based on data available to anyone who searches for it, sources have found that iconic filmmaker Steven Spielberg has approximately $10,000 in unclaimed cashiers checks. Banks guarantee these funds, but you have to claim them to get the money you’re owed.Next: Trump is among a handful of people the bank hasn’t technically paid yet.
… and he’s not the only one
Spielberg may be the celebrity with the most unclaimed cash (that we know of), but he isn’t the only one owed a small sum. Donald Trump apparently also has unclaimed cashiers checks just waiting for him — about $3,000 worth. He might not miss it, but you would — and you might be without knowing it.
Next: To claim these funds, you just have to know which state to look in.
How to find your missing money
Anyone with unclaimed assets or property can check specific online databases to locate (and hopefully claim) their missing funds. Depending on the state you currently live in or those you have lived in previously, you can check Missing Money or multiple states’ property websites.
Next: If you didn’t file a tax return last year or the year before, it’s not too late.
Did you lose a tax refund or two?
Those who don’t file a tax return, but are still entitled to refunds, have three years to claim their money before it permanently becomes the government’s property. The IRS holds billions in unclaimed dollars, and all you have to do is file your return before time’s up. There’s no penalty for filing late.
Next: Changing jobs might mean unclaimed funds are waiting to be found.
You could have lost retirement money
If you’ve changed jobs more than a few times, it’s possible you’ve lost track of retirement funds owed from pensions or a 401(k). You can search the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s unclaimed pension database if you think there’s money floating around in your name.
Next: You may have forgotten to cash these, but it’s not too late.
You might have bonds and you don’t even know it
Unclaimed savings bonds don’t just disappear into the void. If you think you have an uncashed treasury bond, you’re still technically entitled to the funds. To locate the missing money, you can file a claim.
Next: If any of these circumstances apply to you or a member of your family, you’re due a check.
Check for unclaimed insurance payments
Select members of several parties, including veterans and their beneficiaries, as well as customers of failed banks, may be able to claim unpaid insurance funds. For service members, the Veterans Administration has its own searchable online database.
Next: Homeowners should check this database for unclaimed cash.
The government might owe you money from your mortgage
The government might owe many homeowners payback on mortgages insured by the Federal Housing Administration. If you think you’re owed money from a mortgage, you can search the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s database to locate it.
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