Dear Liz: I have a pack-rat mother. During my most recent “purging” of her boxes of papers, I found a cashier’s check for almost $2,000. The catch is, it’s dated Jan. 15, 1986, and was issued by a bank that’s since been acquired. What are the chances of the acquiring bank honoring the check? My mother is wealthy enough for this to be an amusing, albeit embarrassing, story, but I hate the needless waste of money.
Answer: You and your mother can present the check to the bank, but most likely you’ll be directed to your state escheat office, where unclaimed bank funds typically end up. You can find a link at www.unclaimed.org, a site run by the National Assn. of Unclaimed Property Administrators.