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Orphan Funds

Volume 448: debated on Tuesday 11 July 2006

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what his most recent estimate is of the total amount of money held in orphan funds in banks and financial institutions. (82979)

The term orphan funds can refer to unclaimed assets. The Government and the industry have agreed that the definition of an unclaimed asset should generally cover bank and building society accounts where there has been no customer activity for a period of 15 years as that will best identify those accounts that are genuinely unclaimed. On this basis, initial record searches by the industry suggest that several hundred million pounds may currently lie unclaimed.

Orphan funds may also refer to certain assets of insurance companies. The Treasury has made no official estimate of the value of these assets.