Does Ohio owe you money? State coffers have billions in unclaimed funds

Right now the Ohio Department of Commerce has $2.6 billion in unclaimed funds sitting in a state vault, just waiting to be claimed.

Right now the Ohio Department of Commerce has $2.6 billion in unclaimed funds sitting in a state vault, just waiting to be claimed.

If you find your name on the list of unclaimed funds, there are a few steps you need to take before claiming it.

Linda Jay, of Gahanna, saw her name on that list; she said it took her a few years to collect.

It was a life insurance policy from Transamerica Insurance, set up by her father back in 1956, as soon as he learned he was going to be a dad.

He died 9 years ago, and the policy sat in limbo until Jay's daughter discovered it on the state's list of unclaimed funds.

Jay says claiming it involved gathering a lot of paperwork and correcting several wrong names and addresses.

"I just got a letter from the state, saying I had to prove I lived at a non-existent address," said Jay.

She says the insurance company tried to help, but the problems continued. "Then I got a letter back from them, saying they couldn't reach me at 2042 Gibson, which was the non-existent address, and that they had sent them to the state as unclaimed funds. So here I am, back at square one."

Akil Hardy, the superintendent of Ohio Division of Unclaimed Funds, said $96 million was reunited with the rightful owners last year.

He said each type of claim is different, "It can be very complex to evaluate and assess whether the individual who is submitting that documentation is the rightful owner."

We asked Hardy's office for help getting Jay's corrected claim approved.

Ten days later, Jay had her check for $5600.

"It's been a long journey, but I'm so glad I have the money now," said Jay. "I'm sure my dad would be happy that I pursued it and got it. If channel 6 hadn't stepped in, I'd still be trying to figure out how to get it."

To check if you have unclaimed funds, click here: http://www.com.ohio.gov/unfd/

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