RBI wants depositors to act on unclaimed deposits

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RBI wants depositors to act on unclaimed deposits
Representative image from BCCL
  • The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) classifies a deposit as unclaimed when a customer doesn't make any transaction in the account for 10 years or more.
  • These amounts will be now transferred by banks to Depositor Education and Awareness Fund (DEAF) maintained by RBI.
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Unclaimed funds at banks are piling up as depositors and their heirs haven’t been acting towards them. Now, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has decided to use them towards a Depositor Education and Awareness Fund (DEAF).

RBI classifies a deposit as unclaimed when a current account holder or saving accounts customer doesn't make any transaction in the account for 10 years or more. However, depositors are still entitled to claim the deposits at a later date from their bank along with interest.

“The growing volume of unclaimed deposits arise mainly due to non-closure of savings/current accounts which depositors do not intend to operate anymore or due to not submitting redemption claims with banks for matured fixed deposits. There are also cases of accounts belonging to deceased depositors, where the nominees/legal heirs do not come forward to make a claim on the bank(s) concerned,” said Yogesh Dayal, chief general manager of RBI.

The nominees or legal heirs of deceased depositors can identify and claim their deposits by looking up the list of unclaimed deposits on the government’s website.

RBI has been running an awareness campaign with actor Amitabh Bachchan encouraging people to get back their unclaimed deposits from banks but unclaimed money continues to amass.

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“Despite public awareness campaigns undertaken by banks as well as RBI from time to time, the amount of Unclaimed Deposit is showing an increasing trend,” said RBI on Tuesday.
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