The Bank of Canada keeps track of millions of dollars in unused bank accounts across the country. After ten years of inactivity, the money in dormant accounts is transferred to the national bank for safekeeping. The rightful owners of the money (or in some cases, their heirs) can retrieve this money by claiming it. A useful website details the whole process.

I checked the name of all my immediate family and only got back one result. My mom is listed as having a dormant account in the last city she lived in before moving to Vancouver. Geographically, it adds up since she did in fact live there at one time and it would make sense that she would have a savings account. The address listed is a bit of mystery to me as I never knew where she lived in that city. I checked it on Google Maps and there’s free-standing house there. I have no clue if she lived in an apartment or a house back then.

One thing that doesn’t make sense is the dates associated with this dormant account. The last date of activity on the account was in 1994. At that point, my mom had already been living in Vancouver for well over twenty years and it was my understanding that she had moved all her financials over to British Columbia. If she had forgotten about the account, it would make sense that it would have been dormant since the early 70s, when she moved here, so where does 1994 come from? It’s true that our whole family has been back to that city numerous times over the years to visit family but why would my mom still have an account there only to abandon it twenty years ago?

It’s quite possible this account is not my mother’s and that someone with the same name in that city left that money behind decades ago. Tang is a fairly common last name and her first name, while not that common, is not obscure either. I’ll bring up the details with her the next time I see her. The amount is several thousand dollars, so this is something worth looking into.

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