Over $300 million in unclaimed property available for New Mexicans

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – If you’re looking for a little more cash in your pocket as this year comes to an end, you may want to try searching for unclaimed property under your name.

The State of New Mexico is sitting on $329 million in unclaimed money belonging to citizens. The money comes from a variety of sources, including several common sources.

"The most common reasons that someone might have unclaimed property might be that they closed a banking account and didn’t clear out the balance," said Stephanie Schardin Clarke, the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Secretary.

If you think the state – or your state – has no money out there that belongs to you, it may still be worth checking.

"Someone might have been mailed a refund check for taxes but never cashed it, maybe because they moved and it couldn’t be formatted," the secretary said. "We also have traveler’s checks, gift certificates that were never redeemed – things like that."

"Each year New Mexico takes in an average of about $32 million of new unclaimed property," the secretary elaborated, "and we’re only able each year to match about $10 million of that to the owners."

The state estimates only about 4,000 New Mexicans reach out about the unclaimed money. However, reaching out is easier than you think:

"Go to www.missingmoney.com – that website is easy to use and allows you to search a name and by state or nationwide," the secretary explained. "If you find unclaimed property there, there’s a very easy form that it takes you to, to claim your property."

After filling out the form, the secretary says you must provide proof of your identity with a notarized signature and copies of your ID. This is done to ensure the property is distributed to its rightful owners.

The website also works for other states besides New Mexico.

If you live in New Mexico, you can also send an email to unclaimed.property@state.nm.us or call the Unclaimed Property Office at 505-827-0668 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.