Harrisburg, Pa. – In October, the State Treasury auctioned 4,000 unclaimed items, raising more than $ 200,000. According to Pennsylvania State Treasurer Stacy Garrity, the two-day online auction included items such as gold and diamond necklaces, earrings, watches, trucks and cars from collection, collectible cards, rare coins and stamps.
“Our first priority is always to return unclaimed property to its rightful owner,” said Garrity. “However, sometimes it is necessary to sell items at auction due to space restrictions in our vault. Cash proceeds from this auction have been cataloged and funds will be held in perpetuity until the owner is found.
The Treasury partners with Pook & Pook Inc. of Downingtown for appraisal and auctioneer services.
“We are delighted to be working with the Pennsylvania Treasury again after a year and a half of hiatus due to the pandemic,” said Deirdre Pook Magarelli, President of Pook & Pook Inc. “Our first sale was a huge success. , with a 99% sales rate and total sales exceeding our expected high estimate. Like any auction, there were a few fun surprises. Lot 1285, a platinum and diamond ring, cost $ 11,000 – double the estimate, even with a broken ring. Four lots of Morgan Silver Dollars surprised appraisers and bidders when the bids climbed not twice but three times the high estimate. All in all, it has been a terrific auction and we are delighted to start working on our next collaboration with the Pennsylvania Treasury scheduled for March 2022. ”
State law requires businesses to report unclaimed property to the Treasury after three years of dormancy if it is owned by a known owner. If the owner is unknown, companies are required to report it to the Treasury after one year of dormancy. The treasury keeps unclaimed tangible property for about three years before putting it up for auction. The only items ever to be auctioned are military decorations and memorabilia, which remain in the custody of the Treasury until a Veteran or their family are found.
“Most of the tangible goods that arrive in the treasury come from abandoned or forgotten safes,” Garrity said. “These items, regardless of their dollar value, were important to the person who stored them in a safe place, so it’s important to remind everyone to maintain regular contact with your financial institutions and to let a trusted advisor know where you keep your records. Taking these steps can prevent your property from being marked as “unclaimed” and sent to the Consolidated Revenue Fund. “
The items were auctioned for a total of $ 204,670. Pook & Pook will receive a 12% commission for their services, leaving $ 179,670 for the Treasury. To date, the Treasury has raised $ 172,040. Items not sold by auction, or for which the winning bidder does not pay, will be returned to the safe.
The Treasury is currently working to return more than $ 4 billion in unclaimed property to its rightful owners. One in ten Pennsylvanians owe unclaimed property, and the average claim is worth $ 2,000.
To learn more about unclaimed property or to search the treasury database, visit patreasury.gov/unclaimed-property.