The Indiana Attorney General is increasing and expanding its enforcement efforts with respect to Indiana’s Unclaimed Property Act (Ind. Code § 32-34-1 et seq.) (the Act) by authorizing the Indiana Department of Revenue to audit for unclaimed property. In an effort to encourage compliance with the Act, the Indiana Attorney General Office’s has created an Unclaimed Property Amnesty Program which, for a limited period of time, permits eligible holders of unclaimed property to voluntarily comply with the Act and avoid liability for interest and penalties. The deadline to enroll in the one-time only Unclaimed Property Amnesty Program is Oct. 31, 2010.
Under the Act, nearly all business organizations as well as government bodies are required to review their records and determine whether they hold any funds, securities, or other property that have been unclaimed by the owner. A holder of unclaimed property who intentionally fails to pay or deliver unclaimed property is subject to an additional civil penalty of 10 percent of the value of the unclaimed property that must be paid or delivered. In addition, a holder of unclaimed property who fails to render any report or perform other duties required under the Act must pay a civil penalty of $100 for each day the report is withheld or the duty is not performed up to $5,000.
A holder of unclaimed property is eligible to participate in the Indiana Unclaimed Property Amnesty Program if:
- It is not currently under examination by the Indiana Attorney General
- It has not been notified by the Indiana Attorney General that it intends to conduct an unclaimed property examination
- Neither the holder of unclaimed property nor its principal(s) are presently in arrears in their payment of taxes, permit fees, or other required payments to the State
- The holder of unclaimed property must warrant that it has no current, pending, or outstanding criminal, civil, or enforcement actions initiated by the State.
If eligible, the holder of unclaimed property may enroll in the Unclaimed Property Amnesty Program by executing the Amnesty Agreement by Oct. 31, 2010. Under the Unclaimed Amnesty Program, the eligible holder of unclaimed property must also submit all relevant unclaimed property reports and remittances pursuant to the Amnesty Agreement form by Nov. 1, 2010. In order to participate in the Unclaimed Property Amnesty Program, all unclaimed property accrued over the past 10 years (or for as long as the organization has been in business if that period is less than 10 years) must be reported.