We have written before about unclaimed money, but there has been a recent law change, which has led to the amount of unclaimed money doubling to $400 million over the last three months.
This is money that is left untouched by its owner in a bank account or trust, or unpaid wages and life insurance payouts. Amounts less than $100 can be kept by the organisation that holds the funds or paid to charity.
Banks used to have to hold the money for 25 years (what an administrative hassle), but that has now been changed to five years. The law changes were also designed to make it easier for Inland Revenue to track down the rightful owner (after the bank has made their reasonable efforts).
Clearly, you will have to know that the money was there, and prove that you are rightful owner, but if you think you have unclaimed money sitting in this pool, you apply for it through Inland Revenue, but no claims can be made on unclaimed money that is 25 years or older.
There has been an international move to use unclaimed money for charitable purposes, including funding scholarships and other social impact activities.
This is how you start the process of seeing whether you might have unclaimed money: https://www.ird.govt.nz/unclaimedmoney/claiming-unclaimed-money/search-the-database. However, you do need to have an unclaimed money record to send to the IRD or the wizard will just shut you down.
Thanks to Newsroom for this content. You can find out more about unclaimed money here - https://www.moneyhub.co.nz/unclaimed-money-in-new-zealand.html