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? re: very old 401(k) distribution check... any banking gurus?

My hubby has been with his current company for over 10 years. Over the weekend he found a check (401(k) rollover distribution check from his previous employer) in a cabinet! This check was written almost exactly 10 years ago (obviously voided). Anyway, would it be better to contact the previous employer or the banking institution to clear this up and get the $ into his current plan? Does "unclaimed" $ like this eventually get turned over to the state? Thanks for any info.

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Asked by LisaZot at 9:33 AM on Apr. 6, 2009 in Money & Work

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Answers (3)
  • It might have been turned over to the state. My best advice would be for him to contact the former employer and explain what has happened. It will be a somewhat lengthy process, since it was 10 yrs ago, but they will go back and confirm that the check was never cashed. They may ask him to send the check back, just so they can be the ones to destroy it, but since it is so old it wouldn't be able to be cashed anyway. They should issue him a new check once they've gone thru the process of confirming it was never cashed and done whatever they want to do about the check he has. Go thru the employer, though, b/c the bank won't be able to help him. The employer is the one that will have to get it all cleared up. If they've turned it over to the state, they'll be able to tell him how to find it and get it resolved from there. Good luck!

    Answer by tropicalmama at 9:47 AM on Apr. 6, 2009

  • The bank cannot authorize a reissue of any check, regardless of the circumstance. Contact the old employer. From there, I was going to say every thing tropicalmama said.

    Answer by Mom1Stepmom1 at 10:09 AM on Apr. 6, 2009

  • Contact the company that carried the 401K.If it was not cashed the funds can only be left in the account, they cannot be turned over to the state. I hope you had some gains in the last ten years compared to what the check was written for.
    The check cannot be cashed or turned over to the state until they provide proof they tried to contact him and could not. And the money must remain in the 401K by tax law because of the tax and penalties assessed with him not being of retirement age. I assume, you look young.
    If your hubby never paid taxes on the payout, the money is still with the fund company and earning dividends.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:24 AM on Apr. 6, 2009

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