How can I find out if there is unclaimed money or property owed to me?

Even if you are certain nothing is owed to you, it may be worth the short amount of time it takes to check. You can call or write the unclaimed property office in each province or state in which you or any of your deceased relatives has lived. You can sometimes also contact these offices online. The representative will ask you for your name, Social Insurance/Security Number, address and any previous addresses where you’ve lived in that area. They will ask the same information regarding anyone who is a legal beneficiary. If there is a match, you simply have to prove that you are who you say you are, and behold! You have just claimed your money with no charge! In addition, if the search comes up with nothing, try again in a few years. You never know what you could be missing out on.

A warning: do not pay someone a finder’s fee for locating your lost property! If the process is this simple, why would you give up a percentage of your entitlement, or worse a flat fee up front? It may be more convenient, but the commission can be outrageous.