A record-breaking $200 million in forgotten cash and securities were returned so far in the 2019 fiscal year, Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs said Monday.
Nearly 200,000 claims were paid to individuals, employers and nonprofits. This is the largest amount in the program's 58-year history.
"Reuniting people with their unclaimed cash and property is one of my most fulfilling duties as state treasurer," Frerichs said. "We are proud of the changes to our program that have helped pay out a record number of claims in a faster, more efficient way."
The average value of claims was $1,000. By comparison, approximately 116,000 claims were fulfilled in the 2018 fiscal year 2018 ($180 million returned), 58,000 claims in the 2017 fiscal year ($159 million returned), and 53,000 claims in the 2016 fiscal year 2016 ($155 million returned).
The treasurer's office has increased the number of returns due to improved technology, officials say. Additionally, a change in state law allows the treasury to send checks to qualifying individuals even if they do not initiate a claim.
Individuals can search the state treasurer's database for their name or the name of their business or non-profit at www.illinoistreasurer.gov/ICASH.