COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - The Ohio Department of Commerce says increased efforts to return unclaimed funds are working, with about 40 percent more claims paid at the start of this budget year than over the same period in 2010.
Unclaimed funds are dormant or forgotten monies reported to the state until owners can be found, such as uncollected rent or utility deposits, unused bank accounts or uncashed insurance policies.
Ohioans claimed 35.5 percent more money from July through September 2011 than a year earlier. Over the period, 14,473 claims were paid worth a total $14.6 million.
State Commerce Director David Goodman says the money serves the state better when it's in the hands of rightful owners. He says recipients may be able to buy gas, pay bills, make home repairs or expand a business.