Found Money: Don’t Leave It on the Table

The Bedford ~  safe deposit boxes b&w

The Bedford ~ safe deposit boxes b&w (Photo credit: Maria J Aleman)

Have you ever unearthed a forgotten gift card from the stacks on your desk, or maybe even found a $20 bill on the street? Thousands of Wisconsinites have lost track of funds that they once owned. In most cases, the amounts are modest; yet even a modest amount can sometimes make the difference in paying a bill or pumping a full tank of gas.

Misplaced funds are especially prevalent among people who have moved-maybe attending college in one town and then another, accepting a job across the country, or signing up for a military career. In the bustle of things to do, small amounts of money or even goods can inadvertently get left behind.           

The U.S. Department of Treasury reports that there are billions of dollars in savings bonds that have stopped earning interest but were never cashed. These include Series E bonds issues in 1974 and after and Series EE bonds issued in 1980 and after.           

If you think that you might have owned or co-owned a bond but never received it, or never cashed it, you can search a Treasury database containing information on some savings bonds. To check the Treasury’s database, visit and scroll down to begin a search. You will need to enter your Social Security number. If there is a match, you will receive a reference number and a Treasury staff member will contact you. You may then need to complete and submit a form to request payment of any amount due.           

During the Great Recession, a number of financial institutions have closed. Especially if you have moved, you may want to check whether any of your former financial institutions were closed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and whether you might be owed any FDIC insurance money.           

Begin by visiting Click on the link to Complete Failed Bank List ( and look for any financial institutions where you may have held deposits. The list is by date, but you can click to reorganize if, for example, alphabetically by state. If you find that your previous bank is on the list, you can claim any funds owed to you online at:           

The Wisconsin State Treasurer’s Office ( has updated its website to make it easier to search for unclaimed property-including child support payments, undeliverable state and federal tax refunds, and state databases of unclaimed property and the proceeds from U.S. savings bonds.  

In the case of coins, jewelry and other items, after five years, Wisconsin financial institutions send the contents of safe deposit boxes that have been abandoned for at least five years to the Treasurer’s Office. It publishes the names of the owners in local newspapers and holds these items in its vaults for at least three more years. If the owner or rightful heirs do not step forward, the contents of the abandoned safe deposit boxes are auctioned on eBay. So far in 2012, the Treasurer’s Office has returned about $25 million to owners or their heirs.

About Union State Bank

Honesty, integrity, commitment; hometown values that are our way of doing business. At Union State Bank our mission is to be the preferred, locally owned bank committed to providing exceptional service to achieve long lasting customer relationships. The Union State Bank has been serving the banking needs of our community since 1911, when the Farmers and Merchants State Bank was formed in Kewaunee, Wisconsin. The Bank’s slogan was "A Bank of the People, By the People and For the People - A Bank For All The People," and invited the community "if you are not a customer, become one, and we assure you that your interests will be protected in every legitimate manner." In 1934 the Farmers and Merchants State Bank consolidated with the Dairyman’s State Bank, which was located across the street, and the Union State Bank was formed. It was reported in the local paper that "The union of two banks is particularly for the benefit of depositors. All the experience, ability and training gained through many years of banking service is combined here primarily for your protection. The confidence that has been cultivated over past years is now being strengthened." We have continued to grow through the years, and slogans used include "Union State Bank, where rail and water meet" and "Union State Bank, the bank and a half, we give you our all and then some." We currently have four locations. We have two offices located in Kewaunee, Wisconsin which is along the shores of Lake Michigan, approximately 20 miles east of Green Bay. We also have an office in Green Bay, Wisconsin and an office in Two Rivers, Wisconsin. Our main office is located at 223 Ellis Street in Kewaunee. Our second Kewaunee location was established in 1996 and is in the Piggly Wiggly grocery store. Our Green Bay office was established in 1987 and in September of 1999 we completed an addition to that location. In April 2004 we opened our office in Two Rivers. Originally situated inside the Pick 'n Save grocery store, the Two Rivers office was relocated to a brand new building at 2221 Lincoln Avenue on April 21, 2009. We have certainly grown and changed over years, but one thing remains constant - our commitment to our customers. We are proud to be the only independent bank in Kewaunee, which allows us the ability to offer a wide array of services that are designed to meet the individual needs of our customers. We offer full-service banking from an experienced, dedicated staff of full-time employees. We still believe in the "personal touch," and enjoy getting to know our customers. Even though we are a small, locally owned bank, we offer the latest in technology services, including our website and 24-hour account access via our "Union Access" line. We are proud of our long history of high-quality, personalized service, and invite you to become a customer of Union State Bank. See how "We Make the Difference" for you.
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1 Response to Found Money: Don’t Leave It on the Table

  1. Pingback: Best Way To Invest 1000 Dollars - A Free Online Guide for Valuable Investment Information -

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