Earlier this year, the New York Voluntary Compliance Program was revised, such that effective January 1, 2017, holders can benefit from a reduced reach-back period of 10 years (plus dormancy) for General Ledger property (previously 20 years). This does not apply to securities and securities-related properties.
General Ledger property would include unclaimed wages, accounts payable checks, refund checks and rebate checks issued and/or payable from 2003 to 2013; accounts payable and receivable credits, including merchandise credits, issued from 2001 to 2013; and gift certificates sold between 2001 and 2011.
Holder Eligibility for the New York Voluntary Compliance Program
Holders electing not to participate in the program are required to use the audit reach-back start date of January 1, 1992 for General Ledger items.
Holders are eligible for the Voluntary Compliance Program if they have not been contacted by the state for audit and are first time reporting organizations. In some cases, however, holders who have previously filed reports but failed to report particular property types may also be eligible.
Holders who participate in the program must file their unclaimed property reports within 6 months of acceptance into the program.
It is important to note that holders are obligated to complete all necessary due diligence requirements prior to filing their reports. Additionally, holders are unable to modify the terms of the Voluntary Compliance Agreement.
Enrolling in Unclaimed Property Voluntary Compliance Programs
To participate in the program, holders can either email the Voluntary Compliance Unit at NYSVCU@osc.state.ny.us or submit a New York Voluntary Compliance Agreement. A sample Agreement is provided on the State Comptroller’s website at http://www.osc.state.ny.us/ouf/reporters/files/vca.pdf.
State voluntary disclosure programs are an excellent opportunity for holders with past-due property to come into compliance with state unclaimed property laws and regulations. Many states, such as New York, Delaware, and others have very formal program requirements, while other jurisdictions have much more informal voluntary compliance programs. Be sure to consult with the respective state administrators or an experienced holder advocate prior to enrolling.
Keane has extensive experience assisting companies complete voluntary disclosure agreement programs such as New York’s, and can assist your organization every step of the way. Our industry-leading unclaimed property consultants efficiently identify and quantify your areas of risk and exposure, and provide a custom tailored approach to remediation to reduce your risk of audit and mitigate future liabilities. Contact us for an initial consultation.