5 Ways to Locate Lost Assets

Contributed by: Sandra Adams, CFP® Sandy Adams

Working for a firm that has been serving clients for 30 years, it is not surprising that we are often in the position of helping to settle estates, either for existing clients or their relatives. Aside from assets that are known, an important step in the process is to search for assets that might not have been documented, or assets that the deceased was unaware of. Here, I share some very useful resources that can be used to search out missing life insurance policies, unclaimed assets, or money due:

USA.GOV - the site provides links to various resources to search out unclaimed assets by state, lost pensions, unclaimed tax refunds, settlements for closed banks and credit unions, money due from mortgage transactions, savings bonds and more.

Michigan Money Quest - The Michigan Department of Treasury's site for unclaimed property.

NAUPA/MissingMoney.com - The National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators.

NAIC - The National Association of Insurance Commissioners orphaned life insurance policy search.

MIB Solutions - Lost life insurance policy locator service.

If you are the executor of an estate or think you might be the beneficiary of a lost insurance policy or asset left by a loved one, consider searching these sites.

To ensure that you don't leave any "lost" assets for your heirs, search these sites during your lifetime and do your best to document all of your assets, income sources, and advisors using our Personal Record Keeping document.  And make sure your financial planner is aware of your full financial picture so that he or she can quarterback the estate settlement process when the time comes.

Sandra Adams, CFP® is a Partner and Financial Planner at Center for Financial Planning, Inc. Sandy specializes in Elder Care Financial Planning and is a frequent speaker on related topics. In 2012-2014 Sandy has been named to the Five Star Wealth Managers list in Detroit Hour magazine. In addition to her frequent contributions to Money Centered, she is regularly quoted in national media publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Research Magazine and Journal of Financial Planning.

Five Star Award is based on advisor being credentialed as an investment advisory representative (IAR), a FINRA registered representative, a CPA or a licensed attorney, including education and professional designations, actively employed in the industry for five years, favorable regulatory and complaint history review, fulfillment of firm review based on internal firm standards, accepting new clients, one- and five-year client retention rates, non-institutional discretionary and/or non-discretionary client assets administered, number of client households served.

This material is being provided for information purposes only and is not a complete description, nor is it a recommendation. Any opinions are those of Sandy Adams, CFP® and not necessarily those of Raymond James. The information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but Raymond James does not guarantee that the foregoing material is accurate or complete.Links are being provided for information purposes only. Raymond James is not affiliated with and does not endorse, authorize or sponsor any of the listed websites or their respective sponsors. Raymond James is not responsible for the content of any website or the collection or use of information regarding any website's users and/or members. You should discuss any legal matters with the appropriate professional.