Unclaimed Funds

Instructions for Filing Application for Payment of Unclaimed Funds

Unclaimed funds are held by the court for an individual or entity who is entitled to the money but who has failed to claim ownership of it. The United States Courts, as custodians of such funds, have established policies and procedures for holding, safeguarding, and accounting for the funds.
 
I. Searching Unclaimed Funds
 
To search unclaimed funds, use the Unclaimed Funds Locator at https://ucfl.uscourts.gov/. Select OHSB – Ohio Southern Bankruptcy Court from the dropdown list and enter the applicable search criteria. If you need access to a computer to perform the search, you may use the court’s public computer terminal(s) located at the Clerk’s Office. Additionally, you may contact the Clerk’s office at 937-225-2516 x2758 to verify unclaimed funds balances.
 
II. Filing Requirements for Payment of Unclaimed Funds
 
a. Application for Payment of Unclaimed Funds
 
Any party who seeks the payment of unclaimed funds must file an Application for Payment of Unclaimed Funds in substantial conformance with the court’s standard application form and serve a copy of the application on the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, the United States Trustee, the case trustee, the debtor, and the debtor’s attorney (if the debtor is represented by counsel). For purposes of this procedure, the “Applicant” is the party filing the application, and the “Claimant” is the party entitled to the unclaimed funds. The Applicant and Claimant may be the same.
 
A form Application for Payment of Unclaimed Funds (PDF writable) that complies with the court’s Local Bankruptcy Rules is provided.  While the use of this form application is not required, parties requesting the release of unclaimed funds are strongly encouraged to use the form to ensure compliance with the Local Bankruptcy Rules.
 
b. Supporting Documentation
 
1. Payee Information
 
The court will issue unclaimed funds payments: (1) solely in the name of the rightful claimant (including instances where a payment is issued to the claimant but mailed “care of” a funds locator); or (2) jointly to the claimant and the funds locator if authorized by a power of attorney.  The court will not issue payment solely in the name of a funds locator.  Likewise, the court will not make a separate payment to a funds locator to split out any fee or commission.  In conjunction with the Application for Payment of Unclaimed Funds, Claimant’s tax identification number (TIN) must be provided to the court on a certification form signed by the Claimant to whom funds are being distributed.
 
A. Domestic Claimant
 
A Claimant who is a U.S. person1 must use either the AO 213 or W-9 certification form (accessible by searching on the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website at: https://www.irs.gov/). If a Claimant wants payment via Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT), then the AO 213 form must be used.  The completed form must be filed with the court.  If filed electronically, the form should be filed using the Request for Taxpayer Identification Number filing event (it should not be attached to the application).
 
B. Foreign Claimant
 
A foreign Claimant must use a W-8 certification form (accessible by searching on the IRS website at: https://www.irs.gov/) accompanied by the AO 215 form. The completed form must be filed with the court.  If filed electronically, the form should be filed using the Request for Taxpayer Identification Number filing event (it should not be attached to the application).
 
If you have problems completing a form, please contact the Clerk’s office at 937-225-2516 x2758.
 
2. Additional Supporting Documentation
 
Requirements for additional supporting documentation vary depending on the type of Claimant and whether the Claimant is represented. Please read the instructions below to identify what must accompany your Application for Payment of Unclaimed Funds.
 
Sufficient documentation must be provided to the court to establish the Claimant’s identity and entitlement to the funds. Proof of identify must be provided in unredacted form with a current address. If there are joint Claimants, then supporting documentation must be provided for both Claimants.
 
A. Owner of Record
 
The Owner of Record is the original payee entitled to the funds appearing on the records of the court. If the Claimant is the Owner of Record, the following additional documentation is required:
 
i. Owner of Record - Individual
a. Proof of identity of the Owner of Record (e.g., unredacted copy of driver’s license, other state-issued identification card, or U.S. passport that includes current address); and
b. A notarized signature of the Owner of Record (incorporated in application).
 
ii. Owner of Record - Business or Government Entity
a. Application must be signed by an authorized representative for and on behalf of the business or government entity;
b. A notarized statement of the signing representative’s authority; and
c. Proof of identity of the signing representative (e.g., unredacted copy of driver's license, other state-issued identification card, or U.S. passport that includes current address).
 
If the Owner of Record’s name has changed since the funds have been deposited with the court, then proof of the name change must be provided.
 
B. Successor Claimant
 
A successor Claimant may be entitled to the unclaimed funds as a result of assignment, purchase, merger, acquisition, succession or by other means. If the Claimant is a successor to the original Owner of Record, the following documentation is required:
 
i. Successor Claimant - Individual
a. Proof of identity of the successor Claimant (e.g., unredacted copy of driver’s license, other state-issued identification card, or U.S. passport that includes current address);
b. A notarized signature of the successor Claimant (incorporated in application); and
c. Documentation sufficient to establish chain of ownership or the transfer of claim from the original Owner of Record.
 
ii. Successor Claimant – Business or Government Entity
a. Application must be signed by an authorized representative for and on behalf of the successor entity;
b. A notarized statement of the signing representative’s authority;
c. A notarized power of attorney signed by an authorized representative of the successor entity;
d. Proof of identity of the signing representative (e.g., unredacted copy of driver's license, other state-issued identification card, or U.S. passport that includes current address); and
e. Documentation sufficient to establish chain of ownership or the transfer of claim from the original Owner of Record.
 
iii. Deceased Claimant's Estate
a. Proof of identity of the estate representative (e.g., unredacted copy of driver's license, other state-issued identification card, or U.S. passport that includes current address);
b. Certified copies of probate documents or other documents authorizing the representative to act on behalf of the decedent or decedent’s estate in accordance with applicable state law (e.g., small estate affidavit); and
c. Documentation sufficient to establish the deceased Claimant’s identity and entitlement to the funds.
 
C. Claimant Representative
 
If the Applicant is Claimant’s attorney or other representative, the following documentation is required:
 
i.   Proof of identity of the representative (e.g., unredacted copy of driver's license, other state-issued identification card, or U.S. passport that includes current address);
ii.  A notarized power of attorney signed by the Claimant (or Claimant’s authorized representative) on whose behalf the representative is acting; and
iii.  Documentation sufficient to establish the Claimant’s identity and entitlement to the funds, as set forth above.
 
c. Proposed Order
 
A proposed order should not be submitted.  The court will enter its own order.
 
d. Filing the Application
 
The application, supporting documentation, notice of application, and certificate of service must be mailed to the court at any of the following addresses:
 
United States Bankruptcy Court
Southern District of Ohio
221 East Fourth Street
Atrium Two, Suite 800
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
United States Bankruptcy Court
Southern District of Ohio
170 North High Street
Columbus, Ohio 43215
United States Bankruptcy Court
Southern District of Ohio
120 West Third Street
Dayton, Ohio 45402
 
Those with access to the Court’s CM/ECF system must file the application, supporting documentation, notice of application, and certificate of service electronically.  The application, notice of application, and certificate of service should be filed using the Unclaimed Funds filing event found in the Motions/Applications menu.  The supporting documentation should be filed using the Unclaimed Funds Supporting Documentation filing event found in the Other menu.  The certificate of service should reflect service of the application and the supporting documents.  Questions about electronic filing may be directed to the Clerk’s Office at 937-225-2516 x2758.
 
e. Post-Filing Process
 
Any party objecting to the Claimant’s request in the application shall, within twenty-one (21) days after service thereof, serve upon the Applicant and other appropriate parties and file with the court an objection to the application. If no objection is filed with the court within twenty-one (21) days after the filing of the application, the application and accompanying documents may be considered by the court without hearing. If the application is deficient, the Clerk’s office may contact the Applicant for additional proof of identity or entitlement to the funds.
 
III. Links
W-8 (accessible by searching on the IRS website at: https://www.irs.gov/)
W-9 (accessible by searching on the IRS website at: https://www.irs.gov/)
 
 
1 “U.S. person” includes: an individual who is a U.S. citizen or U.S. resident alien; a partnership, corporation, company or association created or organized in the U.S. or under the laws of the U.S.; an estate (other than a foreign estate); or a domestic trust (as defined in 26 C.F.R. 301.7701-7).