DEFINITION of 'Found Money'
A sum of cash or financial account that the holder controls, has forgotten about, then rediscovered. Found money can refer to something as simple as leaving cash in a warm coat and finding it the next season, or a utility deposit that was uncollected after moving to a new address. Each state operates an unclaimed property agency to connect forgotten funds with rightful owners and many belong to a national database.
BREAKING DOWN 'Found Money'
In some states, unclaimed funds escheat to the state after a certain amount of time. In other states, funds will remain in the state's unclaimed property fund forever unless claimed. Unclaimed property includes forgotten bank accounts, uncashed checks, security deposits, insurance payments, utility refunds. Once rediscovered, any of these forgotten funds could be referred to as found money.