Did you know that at the end of December 2016, approximately 1.8 million unclaimed balances, worth some $678 million, were on the Bank’s books?
(source: Bank of Canada)
An “unclaimed balance” is a Canadian-dollar deposit or negotiable instrument, issued or held by a federally regulated bank or trust company. It can be in the form of a deposit account, bank draft, certified cheque, deposit receipt, money order, GIC, term deposit, credit card balance, or traveler’s cheque.
When there has been no owner activity in relation to the balance for a period of 10 years, and the owner cannot be contacted by the institution holding it, the balance is turned over to the Bank of Canada, which acts as custodian on behalf of the owner. Balances are transferred to the Bank of Canada once a year, on 31 December.
The Bank of Canada holds unclaimed balances of less than $1,000 for thirty years, once they have been inactive for ten years at the financial institutions. Balances of $1,000 or more will be held for 100 years once transferred to the Bank of Canada.
If the balance remains unclaimed until the end of the prescribed custody period, the Bank of Canada transfers the funds to the Receiver General for Canada.
What does this mean for you, as a potential customer?
As a client, the more information you have for your executor, the more money that goes to your loved ones. The implications for your loved ones are monetarily huge! If you get your affairs in order, you ensure the funds you have worked so hard for, are appropriated to the correct parties. Make sure you are prepared.