Youngkin Announces New Unclaimed Property Program
Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin entered office earlier this year with a lot of criticism swirling around him. Winning as a Republican in a blue state, Youngkin was said to be a horrible choice. Since being elected, however, Virginia's infrastructure has been upgraded, its electricity prices are among the lowest in the nation, and he's been helping Virginia residents with a $250 gas credit check. By any metric, he's doing well as governor, and the new unclaimed property program he started for Virginians really seems to be a very well received initiative. Youngkin's program is an expansion of the Virginia Department of the Treasury Unclaimed Property Division, and it's called KAPS. It's basically a website to expand on the topic, helping users in Virginia to identify and to claim unclaimed property.
Under Virginia law, if property is unclaimed, citizens who find it and bring it to the government's attention have a claim on it. This could be an abandoned car somewhere sitting in a forest, or something like a deserted RV, or even an entire home sitting on a lot of land. If the property is just sitting there unclaimed, then citizens can file a claim. The issue before Youngkin's change was that this process was very difficult. You would have to go see a tax assessor and make an appointment with a county filing office, and go through a lot of other red tape.
Youngkin's new website initiative streamlines this process and makes it very easy for citizens to expedite the process of unclaimed property. This might result in being told "no" a lot quicker, of course, but it also helps to facilitate any sort of necessary transfer in the event that the property is actually unclaimed. Basically, the state owns any unclaimed property, per the Virginia consumer projection laws, but this doesn't mean that the state is going to sell it to you. For most properties that are unclaimed, they merely transfer them over to you. There is also a section of the site where you can see if you're owed any monetary funds through the treasury.
Best of all is the fact that this KAPS program is not Virginia specific. It can now be utilized by over 30 states and will work with a centralized style of management. So you can actually check on a property that you may have passed in another state. This is big news for a lot of people who are trying to claim abandoned properties in many states.
More States Soon to Follow
If something a government does for his or her state ends up being successful, you better believe that other states are going to adopt it. So, if you go to check with the KAPS system and find that your state isn't registered in the system yet, just give it some time. News is spreading very fast about how much easier it is for Virginians to check on unclaimed property now, and this is something that ends up boding well for Youngkin in terms of approval ratings' points, then other states are going to trip over themselves to become part of this system.
Overall, this is something a lot of Americans could use right now. Americans are dealing with record inflation, record fuel rates, and record rental and mortgage payments. Being able to find some unclaimed funds, or even entire properties is something that can be a huge boon for the common person. An abandoned house, for instance, can be fixed up for a few thousand dollars, unless it's condemned, and you can likely rent that out for $1,200 or more a month. Or you might even be able to sell it for a very high price, since America is dealing with a housing shortage. So the ability to check for and claim unclaimed property without a hassle is something that Americans really appreciate. The process to get this done in Virginia before was like pulling teeth. People were spending weeks at a time and a lot of money to buy documents and make appointments, only to find out that they couldn't get the property.
Governor Youngkin had not really spoken about the KAPS program at all prior to last week. It's as if he didn't even realize it existed until recently. Though he quickly acted and streamlined Virginia's system. Whether you live in the state or not, you can utilize the KAPS system to see if you can claim an abandoned property somewhere.