Unclaimed funds arising from bankruptcy proceedings consists of money that has not been claimed by individuals and businesses owed funds by those who have filed personal or corporate bankruptcy.
Bankruptcy courts hold in excess of $200 million in unclaimed cash owed creditors and filers who either are unaware they’re owed funds, or have moved, changed name or address after marriage or divorce, or simply have forgotten over the period of years that typically are required to resolve a bankruptcy case.
Pursuant to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, a trustee is appointed by the court to liquidate assets. The cash obtained from the liquidation of assets is distributed to creditors, vendors and shareholders pursuant to the code, which stipulates payment priorities. Secured creditors – those with collateral – come first; followed by unsecured creditors and stockholders.
Trustees often aren’t able to locate those owed money, however, particularly in the case where a creditor lives in another state. In addition, trustees have a substantial cache of checks that were sent out, but were undeliverable because the payee no longer resides at the address on record. Because bankruptcy laws are administered by federal courts in 94 judicial districts, these monies do not come under the purview of state unclaimed property statutes.
If you believe you are entitled to collect unclaimed funds from a bankruptcy filing – either as a creditor or someone who has filed for bankruptcy – you must initiate a search with bankruptcy courts and trustees directly.