The House Bill 1605, which took effect Saturday, allows Pennsylvania to seize some retirement accounts three years after they're presumed abandoned - regardless of the account owner's age.
Previously, the state waited until individuals reached age 70 1/2 before seizing retirement accounts and liquidating the portfolios. Now, older folks and famously contact-averse millennials could be affected.
But "someone in their 20s or 30s, who knows where his retirement account is but fails to check in on it regularly and who the Postal Service doesn't deliver mail to, could have his retirement assets turned over to the state three years after mail is returned to Vanguard," Woerth explained.
Vanguard recommends protecting your assets from being turned over to the state as unclaimed property by taking the following steps:
- Make sure all of your financial institutions have your current address, especially if you have recently moved.
- Inventory your current accounts, noting the financial institution at which each of them is held. If you have multiple accounts at multiple financial institutions, consider consolidating them.
- Most important, periodically contact your account providers - via phone, email, or letter, or by logging on to your account online at least once a year. That contact should be sufficient in Pennsylvania to prevent your assets from being turned over as unclaimed property.