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Colorado Adopts Revised Uniform Unclaimed Property Act

By: Cathleen A. Bucholtz Jim Sadik Robert M. Tucci Steven Swaigenbaum Troy R. Wangen |

On April 16, 2019, Colorado Senate Bill 19-088, adopting the Colorado Revised Uniform Unclaimed Property Act, (“CO RUUPA”) was signed by Colorado Governor Jared Polis. The new legislation is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2020.

Among the more notable provisions in the new CO RUUPA is the absence of the standard holder reporting deduction (typically 2% or $25, whichever is greater), the reduction of many dormancy periods from 5 to 3 years, and the inclusion of a Transitional Provision, new C.R.S. § 38-13-1503, which provides for a five-year retroactive application of the new CO RUUPA. The new C.R.S. § 38-13-1503 language provides:

(1) An initial report filed under this Article 13 for property that was not required to be reported before July 1, 2020, but that is required to be reported under this Article 13, must include all items of property that would have been presumed abandoned during the five-year period preceding July 1, 2020, as if this Article 13 had been in effect during that period.

(2) This Article 13 does not relieve a holder of a duty that arose before July 1, 2020, to report, pay or deliver property. Subject to Section 38-13-609, a holder that did not comply with the law governing unclaimed property before July 1, 2020, is subject to the applicable provisions for enforcement and penalties in effect before July 1, 2020.

The new CO RUUPA is subdivided into 15 parts, which are summarized as follows:

  • Part 1 establishes general provisions for the act, including definitions for terms used in the act and authority for the administrator, who is the state treasurer, to make rules related to the act;
  • Part 2 establishes standards to determine if property is abandoned. Under the act, property is presumed abandoned if it is unclaimed by its apparent owner after a specified period of time known as the dormancy period. Some of the dormancy periods in the act are shorter than current law. This part also includes a number of sections that are included in current law to exempt property from the act;
  • Part 3 establishes priority rules for determining when the state may take custody of property that is presumed abandoned;
  • Part 4 requires a holder of property presumed to be abandoned to provide a report to the administrator and to retain certain records;
  • Part 5 establishes the notice that the administrator must provide to the apparent owner;
  • Part 6 establishes how the administrator takes custody of property after it has been abandoned;
  • Part 7 permits the administrator to sell property at a public sale after notice;
  • Part 8 relates to the administration of property and keeps the requirement that the proceeds of property sold be deposited in the existing unclaimed property trust fund and the unclaimed property tourism promotion trust fund;
  • Part 9 addresses claims to recover property from the administrator and includes existing provisions to allow offsets against the claim for child support; judicial restitution, fines, fees, or surcharges; and delinquent taxes and claims of the state;
  • Part 10 permits the administrator to request a report from a person and to examine records to determine compliance with the act;
  • Part 11 provides a holder with the right to appeal the administrator’s determination concerning the holder’s liability to deliver property or payment to the state;
  • Part 12 establishes penalties for a holder that fails to comply with the act;
  • Part 13 governs agreements between an apparent owner and a person commonly known as a “finder” who locates and recovers abandoned property on behalf of the owner;
  • Part 14 addresses the confidentiality and security of information related to the abandoned property; and
  • Part 15 includes miscellaneous provisions relating to the uniformity of construction, electronic signatures, a local government opt-out, and transitional interpretation.

The full text of the new CO RUUPA can be accessed here: https://trackbill.com/bill/colorado-senate-bill-88-revised-uniform-unclaimed-property-act/1649940/.

Please reach out to any member of the True Partners Unclaimed Property Management Team if you have any questions about this or any other developments likely to impact your company.