North Carolina might have free money for you


Do a little online digging to see if you have unclaimed money. | Photo via Pexels

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Hey, NC residents. You might have free money. Yes, I said free money. And no, it’s not a scam, and you don’t have to do anything complicated to get it.

Between July and December, 2020, $29,219,660 was returned to people in the state. How?

Anyone with a last-known address in North Carolina may have unclaimed money that the state is holding. It could be an old utility deposit you forgot about or an old payroll check that didn’t make it to an address before you moved. At some point, the funds were turned over by a company that, for whatever reason, couldn’t contact you, to The North Carolina Department of State Treasurer’s Unclaimed Property Division for safekeeping.

Then, the state tries to find the rightful owner. Thanks to legislation passed last year, if you have $250 or less in unclaimed cash you’ll likely receive a letter from the treasurer’s office alerting you to the funds. No action is required, and you should receive a check in about six weeks.

If the person has died, the appropriate family member can claim it. There is no time limit for residents to make claims.

I just got one of these letters myself, letting me know the department had $25.17 in unclaimed funds that would be mailed to me. It was like finding money in an old winter coat, but better. Then, I found another $10.47 through a search.


Graphic from

OK, so how do I search for my money?

  1. Go to, and from there, click the blue rectangular button that says, “Search now.”
  2. For an individual, enter your last name where it says, “Last or business name.” You can input additional info, like first name and street address, to narrow the search results.
  3. Search the list of names to see if your name is there. If it is, hit “CLAIM” to start your claim. Protip: Search other names you might use, as well as common misspellings.
  4. Once you find your money, there’s a short form that asks you for more basic information.
  5. Type that info in to make your claim.
  6. From there, state officials go through a due diligence process to make sure the right person is claiming the money, including emailing a request for more identifying details (like drivers license info and proof of address). Claims can take six to eight weeks to process.

No internet? Call 866-NCCash1 (866-622-2741) to do it over the phone.

As of now, the state is holding $919 million in unclaimed money.


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