Are there requirements for a manufacturing corporation in New York State to follow escheatment guidelines? I read about banks and financial institutions, but not sure about corporations.

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Yes, unclaimed property reporting and escheatment, including what is termed general ledger property (e.g. credit balances or uncashed checks) are required of manufacturers in New York. There are a very few states in which business-to-business transactions are exempt from escheatment, but New York is not one of them.

We strongly recommend that you review the information on Escheatment found on TAPN:

 

New York does have an informal amnesty program, which means they may work with you to get into compliance without penalizing you for seeking to begin compliance.

New York State has a Handbook for Reporters of Unclaimed Funds available on its Web site. The handbook section on corporations requires corporations "to report outstanding checks issued for goods or services and unclaimed amounts issued for services not rendered or goods not delivered. This covers unclaimed accounts payable and cards.

"The law applies even in those instances in which the instrument indicates an expiration date. The term gift certificate includes gift certificates designated for merchandise and/or services. Gift certificates are deemed reportable at face value even in those instances in which an expiration date is indicated. Unknown amounts are reportable if held by a New York corporation. Section 1315 maintains a five-year dormancy period."

As a caveat, note that in the case of unbilled payables you want to be sure to verify that you in fact took delivery of the products or services the books show as unbilled. You don't want to report property that is not truly unclaimed. Likewise on the receivables side, you want to verify that you shipped product and the credit balance is legitimate.

Should you want to seek help from an unclaimed property reporting specialist (consultant), you can find a list of these companies in TAPN's AP Supplier Source under Unclaimed Property & Escheatment.

Some of these are "holder's advocates" working only for the Holders, while others may consult with/for the states as well as for holders, a point you will want to be clear on. See the "Category Description" and "What to Look for" sections.

You may also find help from the Unclaimed Property Professionals Organization (UPPO, formerly UPHLC), which you can find in the TAPN AP Supplier Source section on Education/Resources/Associations.

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