As COVID-19 has forced millions to work remotely, businesses and government agencies have also had to adjust to these unprecedented times. The Massachusetts Unclaimed Property Division (UCP), however, was uniquely positioned to remote work without disrupting the customer experience and has paid out over $5.5 Million in claims since the start of the pandemic.
In 2016, UCP updated its database system and public-facing website. State Treasurer Deb Goldberg, who oversees UCP, ensured that the division moved from an internal, on premises only, server-based system, to a secured-cloud-hosted web-based system. Employees who now work remotely are able to do so with the same functionality as if they were on site. The division also built a robust outreach program. As a result, staff already had experienced working remotely to initiate and pay claims outside of the office.
“By introducing new technology into Treasury departments and agencies we have been able to continue to efficiently serve the people of Massachusetts during these uncertain times,” said State Treasurer Deb Goldberg, “By establishing an advanced web- based system, Unclaimed Property has been able to serve thousands and pay out millions, which is currently needed by a lot of people.”
The list of unclaimed property owners in Massachusetts has grown each year. As we experience unprecedented circumstances, the UCP team’s established online presence is fully accessible to the public and continues to be extremely effective, as the number of searches and claims for unclaimed property has increased.
In the past five weeks alone, UCP has processed over 12,000 claims. With an efficient and customer-friendly claims system in place, over $5.5 million worth of claims have been properly paid out during the pandemic.
With unemployment numbers increasing, the opportunity for Massachusetts residents to discover unclaimed property that is rightfully theirs has been beneficial. Unclaimed Property can consist of bank accounts, uncashed checks, stocks or dividends, insurance policies, or the contents of safe deposit boxes.
“Similar to other agencies and businesses, we have had to quickly adapt to our new normal,” states Mark Bracken, Assistant Treasurer/Director of the Unclaimed Property Division, “But because of thoughtful planning and preparation we are in a much better place than most and have been able to help thousands of people in the past five weeks.”
UCP currently holds over $3.4 billion in unclaimed property at Treasury and it could be yours. One in ten Massachusetts residents are owed money. To search to see if you have unclaimed money, visit: https://findmassmoney.com/.