So, I get this notice in the mail from an entity called "Estate Trust Asset Recovery," informing me that I'm owed $125.51 from various unclaimed funds. In legal parlance, I'm the "claimant" and the monies due to me are from "property accounts." In order to receive these funds, I need to send this organization personal ID info, and in due time I'll get back $100.51 (the total, minus a $25 cut for ETAR).
Being wary of sending personal info to any unsolicited source, I did an Internet search on "estate asset recovery, Florida," to see whether the company is legit. It is.
I also discovered that, indeed, I AM owed money! But guess what? There's no reason to fork over any finder's fee to anyone. All you need to do is log on to the site fltreasurehunt.org, a government-run site with a searchable database of unclaimed properties in the state of Florida. Fill in the information as you go along, for all accounts you have claim to, and print out the claim form -- which you then mail in with the required proofs of identification (listed clearly on the form).
Woo-hoo! Free money! Well -- not exactly, of course. It's money that was yours all along. But it's kind of like finding cash in your house that you forgot was there -- tucked into the pocket of a pair of jeans; stashed in a fancy going-out purse; stuffed in the back of a junk drawer. Don't you love when that happens? Makes you want to undertake a treasure hunt in other places around the house ...
Just like this blog should make you want to do a treasure hunt on the Web. Oh, and in case you live elsewhere than Florida, or think you might be owed monies in another state, check out the site missingmoney.com, an aggregate of databases from multiple states. Again, it's fairly straightforward to navigate.
Good luck on your treasure hunt for free money!!