WEST virginia legislature
2021 regular session
Senate Bill 318
By Senators Karnes, Takubo, and Roberts
[Originating in the Committee on Finance; reported on March 11, 2021]
A BILL to amend and reenact §36-8-9 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating generally to public notice of unclaimed property held by the State Treasurer; eliminating the requirement that the Treasurer publish the unclaimed property registry in newspapers; requiring the Treasurer to publish a searchable database of persons appearing to be the owners of unclaimed property, to be updated every six months; requiring the Treasurer to publish an annual advertisement regarding unclaimed property in a newspaper of general circulation in certain counties; and setting forth required content for said advertisement.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
ARTICLE 8. UNIFORM UNCLAIMED PROPERTY ACT.
§36-8-9. Notice and publication of lists of abandoned property.
(a) The administrator shall publish a notice not later than November 30 of the year next following the year in which abandoned property has been paid or delivered to the administrator. The notice must be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the county of this state in which is located the last known address of any person named in the notice. If a holder does not report an address for the apparent owner, or the address is outside this state, the notice must be published in the county in which the holder has its principal place of business within this state or another county that the administrator reasonably selects. The advertisement must be in a form that, in the judgment of the administrator, is likely to attract the attention of the apparent owner of the unclaimed property.
form notice must contain: (1) (A) The name of each person appearing to
be the owner of the property, as set forth in the report filed by the holder; (2) (B) The last known address or location
of each person appearing to be the owner of the property, if an address or
location is set forth in the report filed by the holder; (3) (C) A statement explaining that property
of the owner is presumed to be abandoned and has been taken into the protective
custody of the administrator; and (4) (D) A statement that information about
the property and its return to the owner is available to a person having a
legal or beneficial interest in the property, upon request to the
(2) The administrator is not required to advertise the name and address or location of an owner of property having a total value less than $50 or information concerning a traveler’s check, money order, or similar instrument.
(3) Beginning January 1, 2023, the requirements of this subsection are terminated and shall have no effect.
(b) At least once per year, beginning January 1, 2023, the administrator shall publish an advertisement in a newspaper of general circulation in each county of this state notifying readers that the administrator holds unclaimed property and that the reader might be entitled to claim unclaimed property in the administrator’s custody.
(1) The advertisement required by this subsection must provide the following information:
(A) A brief description of the types of property that are commonly held by the administrator;
(B) Instructions for accessing the searchable database of unclaimed property on the administrator’s website; and
(C) Instructions for requesting information regarding unclaimed property from the administrator by telephone or by mail.
(2) The advertisement required by this subsection must be in a form that, in the judgment of the administrator, is likely to attract the attention of the apparent owner of the unclaimed property.
(c) The administrator shall maintain a database on the
administrator’s website that is accessible by the public and electronically
searchable which contains the names reported to the administrator of all
apparent owners for whom property is being held by the administrator: Provided,
(b) the administrator is not
required to advertise include in the database the name and
address or location of an owner of property having a total value less than $50
or information concerning a traveler’s check, money order, or similar