Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Arkansas Passes Law For Immediate Liquidation of Unclaimed Securities

Recently, we posted an article addressing the potential pitfalls to owners arising out of certain state's treatment of "unclaimed" securities account. In that article, we noted a bill pending in Arkansas legislature permitting the Administrator of unclaimed property in that state to sell escheated securities immediately upon receipt, instead of holding them for three years. That bill became recently became law.

The new law was also passed as an emergency measure meaning that the legislature made a determination that this new law was "immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health, and safety." Accordingly, the law became effective immediately upon its approval by the Governor on March 15.

Assuming that the state begins the practice of immediately selling securities reported to the state, it means that owners who later seek to recover their property from the state will not receive the securities -- nor any of the dividends, splits, or other compensation that may have accrued -- but rather just the value of the securities at the time of liquidation, less any fees incurred by the state.  

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