On Tuesday, May 3rd, Texas substantially amended HB 257 proposing, among other things, to adjust the due dates for Texas unclaimed property rules, reporting, and delivery. Previously, Texas’ reporting due date was November 1st with a cut-off date of June 30th. The amended bill proposes a due date of July 1st with a cut-off date of March 1st. Accordingly, Texas’ due diligence statute is amended to match the new deadline.
Previously, holders were required to mail a due diligence letter by August 1st for property deemed abandoned before June 30th. Under the amended bill, due diligence mailings must go out by May 1st for property deemed abandoned before March 1st.
The amended bill also proposes a dormancy reduction for money orders (7 to 3 years) and checking accounts, savings accounts, and CDs (5 to 3 years). The bill also provides for an 18-month dormancy period for utility deposits.
Added only one day before passage in the Texas House, the amendments concerning Texas’ reporting due date are the most notable for holders. As many companies are aware, states typically fall into either the more prevalent Fall reporting cycle or the Spring reporting cycle. Passage of this bill with its recent amendments would result in a third reporting cycle that requires reporting on July 1st. By utilizing that due date, Texas would join Michigan which enacted a July 1st due date in 2010. While Keane is committed to guiding holders through the Texas unclaimed property rules, holders still have a strong incentive to encourage legislators to make their state’s reporting process simpler and more efficient. This bill in Texas is a step backward from the goal of states all using a uniform reporting timeframe.
The effective date for the newly proposed reporting deadline is January 1, 2013. The remainder of the bill would be effective 9/1/2011.
Please note we will continue to track any changes regarding Texas unclaimed property rules and new legislation in our Unclaimed Property Blog and our quarterly unclaimed property newsletter, Keanotes.
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