When you were a kid, did your parents ever "hang on" to your money for you? I certainly did, as I still occasionally lose a few dollars out of my jeans pocket here and there.

For many Texans (and former Texans) we have quite the big "Daddy" holding on to our cash- the State of Texas itself, and you may not even be aware of it. In fact, Texas is holding on to nearly $ 9 billion of our cash. 

So, how does one get their fair share back?  It's fairly easy.

getty images/ canva
getty images/ canva

You may have Unclaimed Property, and you should periodically check Texas' Official Unclaimed Property website. Just put your name in there and search the database for money you may not know has been owed to you. It's typically things like unclaimed paychecks, insurance benefits, deposits, refunds, etc. And the amounts can be anything from about $20 to the thousands. It's worth the few minutes to check!

If you do find you have unclaimed property, just follow the website instructions to claim it. A few years ago I did and I got an old, forgotten utility deposit back. That was an easy $200! A dear friend of mine found she was owed an insurance benefit from a replaced roof and was able to claim over $1000.

If you are the heir of a deceased Texan, it's worth looking as well; however, the claims process will be more complicated. If it's a significant amount of money, it's probably worth the trouble.

Why does the state hold on to unclaimed funds?

[The State] is expected to be a better custodian and more likely to reunite owners with their lost or forgotten property. These laws dissuade private holders from silently keeping property owned by others for personal gain and allow states to put otherwise idle property to use for state purposes.

Yes, the State does use unclaimed property as part of its budgeting, because there's always a significant amount of it just sitting there. But if it's yours, you have every right to claim it and use it how you best see fit.

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