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Having recently submitted my annual tax return, I had to think hard of all the accounts I had, savings and other such things, which got me thinking onto the subject of whether I had missed any. I think that I have remembered all, but then I thought, what if I had forgotten about an account which was opened for me when I was a child and has long since been forgotten about and now considered dormant by the financail institution.
I did a bit of research on this, and some of the figures I have come up with are quite shocking. It is estimated that as much as £500,000,000 is lying unclaimed in bank and building society accounts, while almost as much again is held in dormant accounts by NS&I - plus another £29,000,000 in unclaimed Premium Bond prizes. The majority of the £29,000,000 is mainly composed of £50 prizes, although the largest unclaimed prize at the moment is £25,000.
Through my research, I have come across this new service which is absolutely FREE:
WHO RUNS IT
The site is run by the British
Bankers' Association (covering 42 banks), the Building Societies Association (covering 59 building societies), and National Savings and Investments. Together (so they say), they represent most of the firms that offer savings and current accounts in the UK.
The site is easy to follow and understand, with no complicated jargon, with a cream background, and green boxes with easy to understand instructions
The Home page has tabs that you can click on to go to the following areas:- Home, About the Owners, About The Service, FAQs, Help, Search, Download Forms, Ten Pledges, Contact, Media Centre
IS THIS FOR YOU?
Mylostaccount.org.uk is designed to help where the customer is unsure of which bank or building society holds an account to which they have entitlement, including instances where the bank or building society has since closed or merged.
SEARCHING FOR DORMANT ACCOUNT
To help find your account (and potentially your missing millions) they need as much information as possible.
If your enquiry is simple it should only take a few minutes to complete the questions on the site. More complex enquiries may take a little longer.
It will help you if you have to hand all the information you have about the account you are looking for.
Once you have finished, the information you give will be sent to all the institutions that you indicate might be holding your account.
The types of question that you will be asked will be as follows:-
NAME This must be YOUR full name and PRESENT address only.
Please enter an email address to ensure that you get an immediate acknowledgement of this claim.
ACCOUNT HOLDER DETAILS If you list your maiden name or any other names, these will all be checked.
ACCOUNT AND BANK If you select "Don't Know" you will be able to search for the bank or building society. Make sure that you select the correct bank - for example, if you are looking for a Woolwich account, it is helpful if you could tick Woolwich and not Barclays. The banks that you have selected will be shown on the screen. Please check them before you proceed to the next step.
ADDITIONAL DETAILS Add any additional information here which may assist with the search.
ID DOCUMENTATION You will only be asked for this if an account that matches your search details is found. It will be used to identify you and to validate your claim.
ABOUT THE ACCOUNT HOLDER Please quote as many addresses as possible to help the search.
TIMESCALES FROM INITIAL CLAIM
Searches with banks and building societies can take up to three months as they can involve institutions having to search very old records on the basis of outdated or partial information. NS&I would aim to respond to trace requests within one month. While the banks, building societies and NS&I will do all they can to find your lost accounts and savings, searches are only as successful as the information provided.
After a few weeks, just thought I would update everybody. The powers that be have found me a missing bank account which I did not realise I had. And yes, it did have money in it. A total of £0.03. Oh well, I suppose my dreams of retiring early will have to remain as dreams.