Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Uniform Law Commission to Consider New Uniform Unclaimed Property Act

Many states' unclaimed property laws are based upon one of the Uniform Unclaimed Property Acts promulgated by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws (NCCUSL) -- either the 1995 Act or one of its predecessors, the 1981 or 1952 Uniform Acts.  The NCCUSL is not a group of state legislatures (or even state legislators), but rather is a group of appointed commissioners who are responsible for devising, debating and drafting uniform laws that are intended to be widely adopted by the individual states in order to promote legal uniformity.  The NCCUSL is probably best known for the promulgation of the Uniform Commercial Code, which governs a variety of commercial transactions.

In any event, given the relative infrequency with which the Uniform Unclaimed Property Acts have been amended (i.e., every 20 to 30 years or so), any action by the NCCUSL with respect to unclaimed property tends to be significant.  For example, when the commission last took action in promulgating the 1995 Act, the Colorado Avalanche were still known as the Quebec Nordiques, the invention of the DVD had just taken place, and blogs did not exist. 

Thus, it is notable that last week the NCCUSL announced the formation of a "study committee" to consider revisions and/or amendments to the Uniform Act.  According to the release, the committee will be appointed shortly.  Once formed, the committee may suggest amendments to the current (1995) Uniform Act, draft a completely new uniform act, or decide that no action is warranted.

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