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Banks Play Ball with Government to Hand Over Your Assets
Townhall.com ^ | April 6, 2014 | Bruce Bialosky

Posted on 04/06/2014 11:31:58 AM PDT by Kaslin

Four years ago, I wrote a column about how the state of California had passed a law to make retailers turn over any unused gift cards to the State after a set period. The law did not consider any effects on the retailer; just the fact that California was grubbing for new revenue flows and once greedy politicians see a target they can devise any rationale for why the money or new tax should be placed into their coffers. The column also explored how the State was taking money from unclaimed bank assets as if it were another revenue stream. I never thought I would get caught in the trap, but I did.

Recently after hearing that the State Controller had a website my nephew decided to go fishing on it for kicks. Surprisingly, he found there was an asset listed on the website that was under my name. It was from a cashier’s check issued by a major bank. The website had the information listed regarding the check and the person to contact at the bank. It did not take me long to contact the bank though it was in another time zone.

The bank representative I spoke to asked me if I had contacted the State of California. I asked her why I would do such. My name is Bruce Bialosky. There are no others in existence and it is obviously my asset so why would I go through their rigmarole when we can handle this between the bank and me. She was totally unfamiliar with the process to get me my money despite being the listed representative of the bank. She said she would research that and get back to me. Then I asked her the proverbial $64,000 question: since the asset had been in their hands since October, 2010, had anyone tried to contact me? She disclaimed any responsibility for that process. That is when I asked who at the bank was responsible for the unclaimed assets. She had no clue despite being the identified person on the California website. I then asked my favorite question in these situations – “May I speak to your supervisor please?”

When her supervisor (a high up person in their accounting department) called back, I asked her the same questions which are 1) did anyone try to contact me and 2) who at the bank was responsible for unclaimed assets? She had no clue either, but she promised someone would follow up. Indeed someone did and that was the manager of the branch where the check was issued. She rambled on about their process with cashier checks and how this one had fallen through the cracks. I asked her if she once tried to contact me. I told her I am all over the internet. I am readily accessible. While we were talking I went on Google and found my telephone and address in less than a minute. I asked why they had not done that simple act. She had no explanation, but she lauded the Controller’s website. I then asked again who at the bank was responsible for unclaimed asset and she had no idea, but someone would get back to me and someone did.

A senior vice-president called me from their headquarters. When I asked if they had tried to contact me he stated they sent two letters to the issuer of the check. I replied “Ah, snail mail.” He said it referred them to his professional bankers at an 800 number. I stated that people working at a call center were not exactly professional bankers. I then asked again if there was anyone at the bank who was responsible for unclaimed assets. He finally confessed in a convoluted manner that there was not and again lauded the fact they were working with the state of California to identify owners. I took this opportunity to enlighten him that the state of California has an ulterior motive in that they actually want the assets for the State and that they have only modest concerns for the owner of the asset. I asked him if the bank could not find me, what are they doing about the little old lady who was less able to protect herself? I told him the story of the lady who the bank could not find so they turned over the assets in her safe deposit box to the State. In the safe deposit box was the trust deed to her home where she still lived and they still could not find her. I told him in my case how disgraceful his bank’s actions have been.

John Chiang, California State Controller, has unclaimed assets as the leading item on his website. He is pushing this issue to make him seem like a protector of the people and showing how many unclaimed assets are now reported and claimed annually. He never states how many end up in the State’s hands because no one has made a real effort to find the asset’s owner including the State. Banks are uninterested in spending their personnel’s time finding people that will not enhance their position and they now know the assets will be the State’s anyway.

I have to say once I sent the notarized form in to claim my asset the bank had my money to me in a few days. I am one of the lucky ones, but what about the ones who don’t have my resources. The real winner here is the government with an asset from the bank.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Government; US: California
KEYWORDS: banks; brucebialosky; california; demagogicparty; economy; governormoonbeam; greed; jerrybrown; johnchiang

1 posted on 04/06/2014 11:31:59 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

Statists don’t think we should own anything. They use any excuse they can to confiscate money and property.


2 posted on 04/06/2014 11:35:55 AM PDT by I want the USA back (Media: completely irresponsible traitors. Complicit in the destruction of our country.)
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To: Kaslin

3 posted on 04/06/2014 11:38:58 AM PDT by dfwgator
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To: I want the USA back

4 posted on 04/06/2014 11:50:36 AM PDT by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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To: Kaslin

Which is why I keep very little in a bank. I get paid and the money leaves the account. I do not trust banks not to at some point hand over everyone’s dough.


5 posted on 04/06/2014 11:51:53 AM PDT by CodeToad (Arm Up! They Are!)
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To: Kaslin

The danger is when the state decides an account has been inactive for six months or less it is inactive and takes it. Then the owner gets a monthly statement saying it was taken by the state and he must spend time and effort to get it back. The state decides that they took it by acident and promise to return it as soon as the legistlature passes the state budget and pay off any pressing bills first before the owner gets his money back. It could be months before the owner gets his money back. This has happen to safety deposit boxes in CA where a woman stored a few items in the box and always paid the box rental fee. CA inspectors came and decided that no one open the box for years and had the bank send a letter to the owner to claim it otherwise. Problem is most banks do not update the deposit box owner address despite the fact we have on line ability to do so on all our accounts (I learned that the hard way after I moved and changed my mailing address on line, all accounts were updated but the update of the desposit box had to be done in person or mailed letter to a separate group in the bank, my rental bill was forwarded from my old address. Went to the bank and found out address updates for boxes cannot be done on line). Result was the bank sent the letter to the woman’s old address despite she banks at the bank. Result was the state took the content of the box and auctioned all of it within 30 days. The woman discoverd the problem when the deposit box rent fee no longer came and upon the death of her husband she went to access the box for documents. Then she was informed of what happen. The state returned her documents and the cash for the family jewelry that was auctioned off at discount.


6 posted on 04/06/2014 11:52:13 AM PDT by Fee ( Big Gov and Big Business are Enemies of America)
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To: Kaslin

Great post.

This happened to me.


7 posted on 04/06/2014 11:55:25 AM PDT by gaijin
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To: Kaslin

they tried this gift card theft here too - we sent ‘em packing


8 posted on 04/06/2014 12:00:22 PM PDT by maine-iac7 (Christian is as Christian does - by their fruits)
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To: CodeToad
Which is why I keep very little in a bank. I get paid and the money leaves the account. I do not trust banks not to at some point hand over everyone’s dough.

Agreed. Mine is SS so 'automatic' in - but I take out all but monthly bill $$ wich I pay by check.

Am considering taking all out and paying bill with MO's

Can someone tell me the advantages of a credit union over a regular bank? Is your money, privacy safer in a CU? (Not that I have enough to amount to much - but it's all relative -

9 posted on 04/06/2014 12:05:24 PM PDT by maine-iac7 (Christian is as Christian does - by their fruits)
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To: gaijin

After my mother died I cleaned out all of her accounts. Or so I thought. A cousin called me a few weeks ago to tell me that she was looking at the state unclaimed assets list and an account belonging to my mom was listed. I started the process (”up to 90 days”) and should see something shortly.

Apparently the account was inactive for close to 5 years. My guess is that it is some left over dividends from a small account she had but maybe we get a free dinner out or some ammo out of it.


10 posted on 04/06/2014 12:05:39 PM PDT by NewHampshireDuo
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To: CodeToad

I have a brother that feels the same way very little in his account.


11 posted on 04/06/2014 12:08:03 PM PDT by primrose (PRIMROSE)
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To: dfwgator

Precisely.


12 posted on 04/06/2014 12:10:21 PM PDT by sauropod (Fat Bottomed Girl: "What difference, at this point, does it make?")
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To: NewHampshireDuo

where does one go to view unclaimed assets in a state?


13 posted on 04/06/2014 12:32:39 PM PDT by bestintxas (Every time a RINO bites the dust a founding father gets his wings.)
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To: Kaslin

Bialosky sounds pretty lazy, expecting other folks to keep up with his money. Perhaps he needs to be a bit more diligent in keeping track of his own assets.


14 posted on 04/06/2014 12:39:41 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: maine-iac7
Is your money, privacy safer in a CU?

Short answer to that is 'no'. They do have an advantage of being generally less expensive for those with small accounts.

I would note that the NCUA hasn't been able to resolve a large credit union that they put into conservatorship in 2011. They apparently can't afford the hit to the insurance fund that closing it or selling it would cause. So it remains the ultimate zombie bank.

NCUA has managed to close a number of small credit unions since then.

15 posted on 04/06/2014 12:45:41 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: CodeToad

Money in the bank is, as a matter of law, the bank’s money, not yours. Your account gives rise to a claim on a certain amount of the bank’s money.


16 posted on 04/06/2014 12:46:35 PM PDT by Cboldt
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To: PAR35

Agree with you.

I don’t know which huge bank he is dealing with but they are not in the business of tracking down Bruce Bialosky to deliver the money has left behind.

As a matter of fact the state does have a website, his nephew (not the irritable, one-of-a-kind Mr. Bialosky) found a listing for him, and he is, as he says, one of the lucky ones.

I have no praise for big banks and certainly not for big government. But a person has to watch out for his own interests. Jamie Dimon isn’t likely to call me up about the forty bucks I forgot I had. Or the four thousand either.


17 posted on 04/06/2014 12:49:30 PM PDT by Fightin Whitey
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To: Kaslin
Sometime in the late '90s, my grandmother received a strange letter in the mail that said a distant relative whom she did not know needed her signature on a Quit Claim deed. My grandmother did not know what that was, so she asked family members. To make a very long story short, her name had been on a land deed that she had unknowingly inherited back in the 1970s. Her a-hole brother had never told her she was part-owner of this property. He had died and left it to his children, who then left it to their children. When the last daughter decided to sell it, she needed my grandmother's signature.

This resulted in a huge lawsuit, which my grandmother lost because the last nieces had squatter's rights and my grandmother had never claimed the property. (Hard to do when you don't know you own it!) It was a crappy little dirt tract, so no big loss as far as property goes, but the whole point of it is that probate is a huge deal. Make sure it's done right.

18 posted on 04/06/2014 12:53:15 PM PDT by ponygirl (Be Breitbart.)
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To: Kaslin
I wrote a column about how the state of California had passed a law to make retailers turn over any unused gift cards to the State after a set period. The law did not consider any effects on the retailer

Uhh, the retailer received the full cash value of the gift card, plus the time value of the money.

I find it difficult to come up with any particular reason a retailer should be able to just pocket these funds. One of the main reasons they're so popular with retailers is that a great many of them are never redeemed, which then becomes 100% profit for the seller.

While I'm not entirely sure it's right for the state to take the funds, the retailer certainly has no legal or moral claim to them.

The amount at stake is some billions of dollars per year in the USA.

19 posted on 04/06/2014 12:54:20 PM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: I want the USA back

The key is that the more concerned they are about something, the more they want it for themselves or to use it to control you.

“We want everyone to have healthcare”

Teanslation-We want you to come, hat in hand and beg us to treat you.

“We want to protect your unclaimed property.”

Translation-Having access only makes it easier to acquire for ourselves.


20 posted on 04/06/2014 12:58:19 PM PDT by RedForemanRules
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To: Kaslin; All


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21 posted on 04/06/2014 1:03:58 PM PDT by musicman (Until I see the REAL Long Form Vault BC, he's just "PRES__ENT" Obama = Without "ID")
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; cardinal4; ColdOne; ...

Thanks Kaslin.

> the state of California had passed a law to make retailers turn over any unused gift cards to the State after a set period. The law did not consider any effects on the retailer; just the fact that California was grubbing for new revenue flows and once greedy politicians see a target they can devise any rationale for why the money or new tax should be placed into their coffers. The column also explored how the State was taking money from unclaimed bank assets as if it were another revenue stream.

And the article goes into something much worse.


22 posted on 04/06/2014 1:08:27 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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> John Chiang, California State Controller, has unclaimed assets as the leading item on his website. He is pushing this issue to make him seem like a protector of the people and showing how many unclaimed assets are now reported and claimed annually. He never states how many end up in the State’s hands because no one has made a real effort to find the asset’s owner including the State.

http://www.sco.ca.gov/upd_msg.html
http://www.sco.ca.gov/upd_rptg.html
http://www.sco.ca.gov/upd_poa_about.html

Gubmint employee pay rate search (mystery meat navigation)

http://publicpay.ca.gov/


23 posted on 04/06/2014 1:15:38 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: SunkenCiv

They have $48 from an old insurance policy I had.


24 posted on 04/06/2014 1:17:15 PM PDT by Excellence (All your database are belong to us.)
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To: bestintxas
"where does one go to view unclaimed assets in a state?"

Go to www.unclaimed.org for a supersite and then click through to the state you want.

25 posted on 04/06/2014 1:17:48 PM PDT by Truth29
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To: Excellence

The key is to develop a list of California-based businesses which could cost non-residents our assets, and boycott them.


26 posted on 04/06/2014 2:02:45 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: bestintxas

In Maine, it’s through the Sec of State’s office.


27 posted on 04/06/2014 2:25:13 PM PDT by NewHampshireDuo
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To: Kaslin

This is why all of my cash has been converted to physical silver. I keep some cash for fast access just in case, but 95% of my savings is in physical silver bullion.


28 posted on 04/06/2014 2:43:55 PM PDT by FunkyZero (... I've got a Grand Piano to prop up my mortal remains)
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To: FunkyZero

All my assets are tied up in precious metals....silver, nickel,copper......all in that big jar by the fireplace.


29 posted on 04/06/2014 2:48:52 PM PDT by Einherjar
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To: Cboldt

Hell, this is nothing. The Germans and the French sent gold over for safe keeping during the Cold War. The Germans recently asked for their gold back. The US said, “Sure, give us 22 years.”

I’m not kidding.


30 posted on 04/06/2014 2:56:54 PM PDT by RinaseaofDs
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To: ponygirl

Sometime around 1925 my father received a letter from a lawyer in Tulsa, OK that a friend of his father’s (Patrick Corley) had left him an inheritance. My father paid a friend of his to drive him, since my father did not have a decent car. My father was a day late getting to Tulsa from south of Dallas and was told he no longer had any part of the inheritance, and the lawyer kept the letter. I think a relative or the lawyer cheated him. The county clerk of Tulsa replied last week saying there was no record of my father’s name or any record of an inheritance.


31 posted on 04/06/2014 3:00:08 PM PDT by charlie72
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To: ponygirl

Sometime around 1925 my father received a letter from a lawyer in Tulsa, OK that a friend of his father’s (Patrick Corley) had left him an inheritance. My father paid a friend of his to drive him, since my father did not have a decent car. My father was a day late getting to Tulsa from south of Dallas and was told he no longer had any part of the inheritance, and the lawyer kept the letter. I think a relative or the lawyer cheated him. The county clerk of Tulsa replied last week saying there was no record of my father’s name or any record of an inheritance.


32 posted on 04/06/2014 3:00:17 PM PDT by charlie72
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To: maine-iac7
I don't think a credit union is any different than a bank when it comes to fed oversight. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the follow all the same rules. The way I always understood it, the only difference is Credit Unions are co-ops owned by a group of members rather than a company.

IMHO, The safest thing to do is convert your overflow cash into something physical that will not depreciate. This does 2 things: Un-ties you wealth from the sliding dollar scale and 2: converts it from a track-able and taxable electronic record to a physical item that cannot be tracked... no one but you needs to know it exists.

There are risks depending on what you convert it into, but I chose silver because my goal was to safely STORE my wealth, not to try to play the silver market game. Doesn't matter how many dollars they print and dilute the pool, 1oz of silver is still 1oz of silver... they can't print that or water it down and take it.

33 posted on 04/06/2014 4:11:04 PM PDT by FunkyZero (... I've got a Grand Piano to prop up my mortal remains)
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To: FunkyZero

In 1933 President Roosevelt passed executive order 6102 which forbade the hoarding (ownership) of gold within the continental United States.

Our present leader probably could do the same thing with gold and silver by using his famous phone and pen.

Chilling, isn’t it?


34 posted on 04/06/2014 4:40:18 PM PDT by karl
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To: karl

That’s why it’s nice that it isn’t really traceable. At least for now...


35 posted on 04/06/2014 5:48:50 PM PDT by FunkyZero (... I've got a Grand Piano to prop up my mortal remains)
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To: Fee

I’m thinking now that maybe having a safe deposit box in a bank is not a good thing....the govt can come up with any excuse to get into it....things to ponder...


36 posted on 04/06/2014 6:16:48 PM PDT by cherry
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To: FunkyZero
no one but you needs to know it exists.

Well, the one problem with that is that the IRS gets to pretend that you found it by the side of the road if you convert it in a transaction they can track.

37 posted on 04/06/2014 9:46:15 PM PDT by kiryandil (turning Americans into felons, one obnoxious drunk at a time (Zero Tolerance!!!))
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To: kiryandil

I’ve thought that all out pretty carefully. Keep the transactions small. I’ve purchased over 210 pounds of pure silver in transactions all under 2000 dollars from local stores over a period of many years. It’s a nice feeling too knowing over half of it I bought under 8 bucks/oz. You don’t even need to show ID to buy silver. The bank is where you have to be careful... even if you withdraw 10K from the bank in smaller transactions, they can decide to combine them and report it if they think you are trying to evade the 8300. I keep habits, I am forced to accept electronic payments for my salary so I immediately withdraw a large chunk of it every Saturday morning too. It’s just me owning my cash as far as they are concerned. I do realize nothing can stop them from investigating someone, but all they will ever find with me is a small wad of cash under 1000 bucks. There is nothing else to find. Granted, you simply can’t move a bunch at once, don’t even try it. The same would be true if you ever convert it back to USD... do it it smaller transactions or you will attract unwanted attention. You have to be consistent and systematic over a long period of time... not something a dope dealer of drug king pin could get by with... and that’s who they are looking for anyway. Anyone sent my way would have a hellof a task trying to find any silver.


38 posted on 04/06/2014 10:50:37 PM PDT by FunkyZero (... I've got a Grand Piano to prop up my mortal remains)
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To: FunkyZero
You're a peasant who lives under a tyranny.

You're guilty, just like me.

The IRS employees who broke the law to target Tea Party people - well, they're innocent, as all government functionaries in a tyranny are...

39 posted on 04/06/2014 11:06:55 PM PDT by kiryandil (turning Americans into felons, one obnoxious drunk at a time (Zero Tolerance!!!))
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