Account Recovery Process Answers
It’s perfectly understandable that you may have questions about our services and the account recovery process. While each circumstance is different, we’ve collected the following list of the most commonly asked questions we receive and provided the answers below. We also invite you to watch our video, which provides an overview of the services we provide.
- Why was I contacted about the account recovery process?You have been contacted because after extensive research, we have determined that you are the rightful heir or beneficiary to an account where the original owner of the account is now deceased. We contacted you to begin the process of establishing and proving your legal entitlement to the account. The first step in our process is to contact you to determine whether you are aware of the account in question.
- What is dormant property?Typically, this means a financial asset to which your ownership has become disconnected. There are over 100 different asset types that can fall into this category, including bank accounts, shares of stock, mutual funds, insurance proceeds, or brokerage accounts. Whatever it is, you either don’t realize that you are disconnected from the asset – or never even knew that you were its rightful owner in the first place.
- How does property become dormant?There are many possibilities. Perhaps this was an account that was missed or not handled by a deceased account owner’s estate. What is important to remember is that the asset was disconnected from you through an innocent oversight. At Legal Claimant Services, it is our mission to correct that oversight and reconnect the proper legal claimant with the property.
- Who does Legal Claimant Services work for?Our clients are corporations and financial institutions that look to us to help them find the rightful owners of certain financial accounts that have remained dormant for a number of years. Finding dormant property owners can be surprisingly difficult. The truth is, companies who work with Legal Claimant Services do so because they want to do everything they can to make sure the property is returned to the proper legal claimant. In fact, they are doing more than they are legally obligated to, in the interest of doing the right thing.
- How did Legal Claimant Services find me?The trail to connect you with the dormant account or asset is often tangled and complicated. Companies who work with us can’t make the connection, and most people wouldn’t know where to begin. Our genealogical research experts work with a collection of historical and contemporary archives, city and telephone directories, public records data, and proprietary databases. These resources enable our staff to achieve an average success rate of 90% in locating legal claimants like you.
- What service does Legal Claimant Services provide?At Legal Claimant Services, our goal is to make it as simple as possible for you. In addition to handling all ongoing communications, we’ll take care of matters such as document replacement, registration transfers, legal fees, court costs, fiduciary bonds, etc. Your Keane Account Executive will make sure your questions are answered and your concerns are addressed throughout the process.
- How long will the Account Recovery Process take?Each situation we encounter is unique and varies in complexity. To ensure that the process is completed in a timely manner, we encourage you to complete and return all required documents promptly. Also, it is advised that you speak with your Account Executive immediately if you encounter problems or have any questions about timelines and/or next steps.
- Why does Legal Claimant Services charge a fee?The account recovery fee covers a range of services that we provide throughout the recovery process. Before we reach out and contact potential legal claimants, we invest significant amounts of time and resources to research each account. Our Trusts & Estates experts must first identify the potential proper legal claimants and then collect the documentation that proves or disproves their entitlement. Then, after we’ve successfully located and communicated with all of the claimants, we begin the work of completing the legal steps to ultimately transfer the account to the appropriate legal claimant(s).
- Do I need to act on this now?It is very much in your best interest to act quickly. State laws mandate that, after a period of time, unclaimed property must be remitted to the states. (It will still be technically yours, but the state will hold it unless you come forward.)As you may expect, it can be difficult locating and processing the return of any property of a deceased account owner that has been transferred to the state. Statistically, only a small fraction of the assets remitted to the states ends up being returned to owners or the proper legal claimants.
- What will you need from me?In some cases, we may need a copy of some key documents such as a birth certificate or your driver’s license. Your Legal Claimant Services Account Executive will let you know exactly what we need to prove your entitlement to the account.
- What is a medallion signature guarantee and where can it be obtained?The medallion signature guarantee is a lime green stamp which certifies your signature is genuine. This stamp can be obtained from any bank, credit union, or brokerage firm where you maintain an account.The bank or brokerage firm representative will compare your signature with the signature on file for your account. Provided that the signatures correspond, the representative will then place the medallion signature guarantee stamp on the form Keane will provide when you choose to use our service.
- Why do I need a medallion signature guarantee?By providing the medallion signature guarantee, your bank or credit union assumes the liability for verifying your signature, thereby protecting both the holder of the account and you from the consequences of fraud. A notarization, while acceptable to some financial institutions is not acceptable to all of them.
- How can I be sure this isn’t a scam?While it’s perfectly understandable to have an initial feeling of skepticism or disbelief, rest assured this is not a scam. Keane and Legal Claimant Services are registered members of the Better Business Bureau, as well as the Greater New York and Philadelphia Chambers of Commerce. Additionally, the account recovery experts that make up our team have been prominently featured in a variety of national, regional, and industry leading publications. Our ultimate goal is to reunite you with the assets to which you are entitled, while making the entire process as transparent and simple for both you and your family.
We even invite you to visit one of our offices to discuss your case and answer any questions. If this is an option you would like to pursue, please make arrangements with your Account Executive by calling 888.876.7635 or 646.770.9250 and we’ll be happy to schedule an in-person appointment.