Inactive Account FAQs
The state of residence of an account owner (or if the account owner(s) resides in a foreign country, the state in which the fund company is incorporated), may require us to turn over the assets in the mutual fund account as abandoned property unless contact is initiated by the account owner or an authorized representative with American Funds. Some states have added “inactivity” or the absence of investor-initiated contact as a component of their rules and guidelines for the escheatment of unclaimed property. These states may consider certain property to be abandoned when there is no investor-initiated contact on an account for at least three (3) to five (5) years.
To safeguard the shares in the account owner’s mutual fund account(s) from being deemed abandoned and turned over to the state, it is necessary to affirmatively initiate contact with us.
The notice you received provides the methods for you to affirmatively make contact with us. They are as follows:
Other than the initial setup of the automatic withdrawal option, many states may not consider ongoing automated withdrawals or the reinvestment of dividends as investor-initiated contact.
Investor-initiated contact generally includes:
Escheatment is the process of turning over unclaimed or abandoned property to a state authority. Escheatment laws require mutual funds to turn over uncashed checks and/or client account fund shares if the owner cannot be located within a length of time determined by each state.
Unclaimed property is any financial asset with no activity by its owner for an extended period of time. (The definition of “activity” varies by state.) This includes mutual fund accounts, savings accounts, checking accounts, unpaid wages or commissions, stocks, underlying shares, uncashed dividend checks, paid-up life insurance policies, safe deposit boxes, and uncashed benefit checks, gift certificates, etc.
The states have unclaimed property laws to:
Below there are links to the state resources websites where you can review information on recovering escheated financial assets. The states do not permit American Funds to assist you in the recovery process.
For accounts registered under the same Social Security or Taxpayer Identification Number, it is not necessary to initiate a separate contact for each of your accounts with American Funds. Initiating contact on any one of the American Funds’ accounts with the same Social Security number or Taxpayer Identification Number qualifies as contact on all accounts.
However, if there are related accounts with a different Social Security number or Taxpayer Identification Number, the owner or authorized representative does need to initiate a separate contact for those accounts. They can do so by responding to the Notice of Inactivity received. Each Notice of Inactivity is unique to the group of accounts with the same Social Security number or Taxpayer Identification Number and will provide a unique control number.
We encourage the account owner or his/her authorized representative to be proactive and make contact with the fund company on a regular basis going forward. Contact can be by one of the following methods:
You may call the toll-free number listed in the notice you received.
Click on the appropriate state resources below for more information on specific state abandoned property rules and requirements, or to obtain information on how to claim property that has been sent to the state as abandoned.
Investments are not FDIC-insured, nor are they deposits of or guaranteed by a bank or any other entity, so they may lose value.
Investors should carefully consider investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. This and other important information is contained in the fund prospectuses and summary prospectuses, which can be obtained from a financial professional and should be read carefully before investing.