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Canadian Banks Unveil Controversial Program For Unclaimed Account Balances

“This will help so many people in tough economic conditions for years to come.”
Executives of Canada’s “Big Five” banking institutions have unveiled the latest changes on what will happen to unclaimed balances that stay dormant for a minimum of 10 years.

The number of dormant bank accounts with balances ranging from pennies to hundreds of dollars, sometimes even thousands, have continued to rise year over year for decades. Analysts have cited that with the innovation in banking over the years, it’s become “too easy” to simply switch institutions when it becomes more convenient. Most Canadians do business with several banks and credit unions. As a result, thousands of accounts with balances have been forgotten and left unclaimed for years.

Up until now, these unclaimed balances were transferred to a third party to act as a custodian on behalf of the owner until a claim was made. This has however proven to be extremely inefficient as the number of claims each year have been significantly lower than the number of accounts transferred in.

With fears of a pending recession to hit next year sweeping the nation, the Big Five banks have together developed a program designed to dispurse these unclaimed funds back to Canadians

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