The South Carolina Uniform Unclaimed Property Act, found in SC Code Section 27, Chapter 18, requires that all entities that hold unclaimed funds, including local governments, must work to return those funds to their owners each year.
When cities and towns cannot locate the owners, they must send the remaining unclaimed funds to the State Treasurer’s Office. The Treasurer continues the effort to locate the owners using the website southcarolina.findyourunclaimedproperty.com. Through it, users can search for funds owed to any person or business.
So far, the effort has returned more than $366 million in funds.
There are several types of unclaimed funds that municipalities might hold:
- Accounts payable – Unpaid credit balances, which can include uncashed payroll checks.
- Courts and jails – Overpaid bail bonds or leftover inmate account funds.
- Parks and recreation – Deposits for facility rentals.
- Water and sewer funds – Deposits left when customers end service.
The State Treasurer’s Office provides this timeline for identifying unclaimed funds and handling them appropriately:
- No later than June 30 – Cities must review their records for unclaimed property.
- July to October – For all unclaimed funds, cities must attempt to locate the property owner by sending the owner a notification form letter to the last address on file. The law does not require them to send a letter when there is no valid address available.
- No later than November 1 – Cities must send an electronic unclaimed property report and remittances to the State Treasurer.
The State Treasurer’s website
provides a form owner notification letter. It also provides information on how to create reports in acceptable formats and remit funds.