BizFilings Logo
800-981-7183

Unclaimed Property Rules and Time Limits for Minnesota

Filed under Basic Accounting. Fact checked on May 24, 2012.

Article Tools

Learn the unclaimed property rules and their time limits for the state of Minnesota.

In Minnesota, all things relating to unclaimed property are handled by the Unclaimed Property Division of the Minnesota Department of Commerce.

  • As a business owner, this will be the agency to contact if you possess unclaimed property (unpaid wages, for example). Remember that you are subject to both reporting requirements and the obligation to turn over abandoned property to the state.
  • It is also the point of contact if you believe that you may have knowingly, or unknowingly, abandoned property (for example, failing to get back a security deposit, didn't receive a tax refund).

Minnesota businesses have a number of responsibilities concerning unclaimed property. Initially, written notice must be sent to the apparent owner of the unclaimed property, if known. If the property remains unclaimed, businesses have a number of filing and reporting requirements to fulfill. Most importantly, businesses are required to turn over any and all unclaimed property to the state. Stiff penalties apply to businesses who fail to comply with any of these requirements.

Individuals should know that Minnesota property is generally presumed abandoned if it has remained unclaimed by the owner for more than three years after it became payable or distributable. However, this time limit varies depending on the type of property involved. Once abandoned property is turned over to the state by a business, an individual then has three years to reclaim it before the state sells the property to the highest bidder at a public sale.

Reporting Unclaimed Property in Minnesota

In Minnesota, information reports are required of persons holding property (e.g., banks, insurance companies) which has escheated to the state by reason of a presumption of abandonment as described above. The report is made to the Commissioner of Commerce and is due before November 1 for each year ending as of the preceding June 30. Insurance companies file by October 1 of each year ending as of the preceding December 31. The report requires identification of the property and its former owner and dates when the property became payable and when the last transaction with the owner occurred.

Prior notice to owner. Not more than 120 days before filing the required report, a holder of abandoned property is required to send written notice to the presumed owner at his or her last known address informing the owner that the holder is in possession of such property if:

  • the holder has in its records an address for the presumed owner that the records do not disclose to be inaccurate;
  • the claim of the apparent owner is not barred by the statute of limitations; and
  • the property has a value of $100 or more.

A holder of unclaimed property that needs an extension of time to file a report is required to mail or fax a written request to the Unclaimed Property Unit of the Department of Commerce at least 30 days before the due date of the report. The request must state the reason the holder needs more time and estimate the date the holder's filing will be completed.

Delivery. Persons who are required to file information reports (see above) must deliver the property to the Commissioner at the same time. The Commissioner may decline to accept property or may dispose of property without value.

Recordkeeping. Minnesota has no specific recordkeeping requirements for businesses reporting unclaimed property to the state.

Penalties. a person who fails to file the information report is guilty of a misdemeanor. Interest is charged at the annual rate of 12 percent for failure to deliver property after written demand by the Commissioner.

Claiming Unclaimed Property in Minnesota

In Minnesota, property is generally presumed abandoned if it has remained unclaimed by the owner for more than three years after it became payable or distributable. However, this time limit varies depending on the type of property involved. Once abandoned property is turned over to the state by a business, an individual then has three years to reclaim it before the state sells the property to the highest bidder at a public sale.

Locating abandoned property held by the state. Within the calendar year following the year when unclaimed property has been paid or delivered to the Department of Commerce, the Commissioner must provide public notice of the property to the apparent owners of the property. Public notice may include the use of print, broadcast, or electronic media. The published notice must contain:

  • the names and last known addresses, if any, of persons listed in the report and entitled to notice within the county;
  • a statement explaining that owner's property is presumed abandoned and is in the Commissioner's custody; and
  • a statement that a person having a legal or beneficial interest in that property may obtain information about the property by making an inquiry to the Commissioner.

Unclaimed property held by the state may also be found by searching the state's website (http://www.commerce.state.mn.us/DOC_Unclaimed_Property_Lookup.htm).

To find out if other states may be holding your unclaimed property, search the national database established by the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators (NAUPA).

Filing a claim. Claims for the recovery of abandoned property are made to the Commissioner on a form designated by that officer. The Commissioner will notify the claimant in writing of the finding.

A person aggrieved by a decision of the Commissioner or a person whose claim has not been acted upon within 90 days after its filing may bring an action in the district court within 90 days after the unfavorable decision or 180 days after the claim not acted upon.

Minnesota Unclaimed Property Resources

If you're looking for additional information on unclaimed property, we recommend contacting your state's governmental agency that oversees the administration of this area of the law. For help in answering a specific unclaimed property question in Minnesota, contact the following:

Minnesota Department of Commerce
Unclaimed Property Division
85 7th Place East, Suite 500
St. Paul, MN 55101-3165
Phone: (651) 296-2568, 1-800-925-5668 (MN only)
Fax: (651) 282-2568
E-mail: unclaimed.property@state.mn.us
Website: http://www.state.mn.us/portal/mn/jsp/content.do?id=-536881373&agency=Commerce

Minnesota Abandoned Property Time Limits

Property Type Presumed Abandoned After
Bank account three years
Checks or drafts three years
Demutualization proceeds no specific provision
Gift certificates, gift cards, and credit memos Credit memos: three years
Insurance policies Life or annuity policies: three years
IRAs or retirement funds no specific provision
Money orders Issued by a bank: seven years
Issued by a non-bank: three years
Other intangible personal property not otherwise specified three years
Cooperative patron payments: seven years
Mineral proceeds, royalties, unclaimed workers compensation, vendor checks: three years
Proceeds from class action suits no specific provision
Property distributable by a business association in the course of dissolution six months
Property held by courts or public agencies three years
Property held by fiduciaries three years
Safe deposit boxes five years
Shares in a financial institution three years
Stocks, dividends, and distributions three years
Traveler's checks 15 years
Deposits and advances owed utility company customer one year
Wages or salaries one year

Article Tools

blog comments powered by Disqus
Next Article in Finance
Missouri Unclaimed Property Rules & Time Limits

Learn the unclaimed property rules and their time limits for the state of Missouri.

Read More »Next Article
Close