mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Friday, May 07, 2010

Oh, I see you aren't using this money, so we're going to take it...

Most financial advisers suggest that you should keep an emergency fund of about 3 month's salary for emergencies. When I finally reached the point in my life where I had enough money to do this, I did. I opened a high-yield savings account with an internet bank, deposited $8000 or so in it, and left it there. The idea was that I wouldn't touch it - because it was separate from my normal savings account and not particularly easy to access, it would be there if I needed it, but I wouldn't see it or think about it when I checked my normal bank balance.

Evidently, the state of Maryland has a problem with people leaving money to sit and earn interest. I got a letter recently that unless I contact the bank, my money would be considered abandoned based on state laws and be confiscated by the state. I have yet to respond, but I need to do so, or the government is going to take MY money out of MY bank account because I chose not to deposit or withdraw from that account. This seems like the stupidest thing ever. The law is here (pdf).

I can get the government to not take my money for no reason if I send a notarized letter back to the bank, which means I need to deal with a notary - luckily there are a few where I work. I'm guessing if I log in and move a few bucks in or out it would also do it, although I'm not sure since it's been over 3 years. The letter said they would turn it over in October.

Once again, I don't understand this. Why does the government feel that people leaving money in the bank is so horrible that they need to seize the funds of those who dare to do so? It also seems like the law is horribly outdated in the times of internet banking - the law includes text that some of the definitions of activity include going to them to get your interest record updated - kind of hard when you are dealing with an internet bank - or communicating in writing. Who the hell writes to their bank?

There are lots of naked grabs for cash that the government does, but rarely do you find one quite so blatant.


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