Lost Money

It is estimated that a MASSIVE £15 billion in lost money is out there waiting to be claimed!

You may have money sitting forgotten in a bank account, lost Premium Bonds, a misplaced pension, unknown inheritance or even unclaimed or lost Tesco Clubcard points.

If you think you might be entitled to some missing cash then read on, you might get a pleasant surprise


Need to know

  • Thousands of people in the UK could be missing out on money that belongs to them, simply because they have forgotten about it!
  • You may have lost track of your cash after a name change due to divorce or marriage, a change of address, incomplete records, a bereavement or just misplacing paperwork
  • You could also have:

                Money in a forgotten bank or savings account (sometimes called a dormant account)

                Unclaimed inheritance from a relative who died intestate (without a will)

                Pension saved in a previous job

                Old share certificates

  • Your search can start online with the sites we've listed below. In some cases you will then need to follow up yourself, but a little communication will be well worth the effort to get you reunited with your money
  • With a lost inheritance or old shares there may be small administration fee form to reunite you with the money once it has been found, but in most cases there is no need to pay anyone to search for you

Lost bank accounts

This is a FREE service from the British Bankers’ Association, the Building Societies Association and National Savings & Investments, designed to complete a search for you and reunite you with an old account


Why we like it:

  • takes minutes to fill out their form and start a search
  • aim to provide an answer within 1 month
  • the more details you can provide the faster the search will be
  • you will need past names, addresses and any details you may have of the accounts

Watch out:

  • WARNING a conman calling himself Chairman Payment/Review Committee of the BSA, BBA and NS&I is currently emailing people asking for their bank details DO NOT respond to them
  • no personal account details will ever be asked for or divulged by this service
  • can search for accounts that aren’t in your name, but you should go to the relevant bank first if you can

Lost Premium Bonds

Premium Bonds are a popular way for parents and grandparents to save for a child and over the years the details are often misplaced, especially after a move. The NS&I run a tracing service, you can download a form here or you can use MyLostAccount to do the trace online. We've got loads more info on lost Premium Bonds on our guide


Why we like it:

  • tracing forms and brochures
  • manage bonds online
  • prize checker
  • straightforward language used
  • excellent phone helpline
  • suggestions on other savings options

Watch out:

  • lots of information squeezed together

Lost Inheritance

Relatives have 12 years to claim inheritance. The Government’s Treasury Solicitor publishes a list EVERY WEEK so that you can track them down for FREE! 

If you find a deceased member of kin on the list you then need to email bvestates@tsol.gsi.gov.uk stating the deceased's name, date of death and your relationship to them. You should then get a response within 20 working days

Bona Vancantia

Why we like it:

  • see a list of estates currently unclaimed
  • sounds like a spell from Harry Potter
  • list updated first working day of each month

Watch out:

  • you will need details and proof- taking a punt wont work
  • generally only administer estates worth over £500
  • will take part of estate as an administration fee

Lost Pensions

The Government’s Pension Service has details of over 200,000 pension schemes and yours may be amongst them

If you find a lost pension you have many options including transferring the money to a current pension or just keeping track of it until you reach retirement age. There may be exit fees when you close a pension. We'd recommend seeking advice from the pension advisory service

Pension Tracing Service

Why we like it:

  • free service
  • the form will take less than 5 minutes
  • you need details of the type of pension and employment
  • you can also call on 0345 6002 537

Watch out:

  • the tracing service will give you the address of the provider, it is up to you to get in contact

Lost Shares

The best process to go through if you think you had shares in a company or find an old share certificate is:

  • Go to the Companies House website to check that the company still exists and get their address
  • Write to the company secretary and ask for the name and address of its registrars (who look after a company's share register)
  • Write to the register to make sure that you are on their list of shareholders and to ask any questions that you may have. They will be able to tell you whether you are a shareholder in a company and also replace lost share certificates for a small fee

There are specialist share tracing companies out there like Proshare but they will charge VERY high fees – which are, on occasion, more than the cost of the shares. It is always much better to contact the registrar yourself 

Companies House

Why we like it:

  • check for existing companies for free in a few seconds
  • search with company's name or registration number
  • can get a free app to check for companies
  • click on the company number to access the address

Watch out:

  • this search will tell you if the company has been dissolved
  • if the company has been dissolved you can write to the address but you are unlikely to get a response

Lost Clubcard Points

The Clubcard is one of the best loyalty cards available. If you have unspent Tesco clubcard vouchers you can find them online. If you ever lose your clubcard you should call  0800 59 16 88 and ask for a replacement rather than opening a new account so you can keep hold of any points or vouchers

Tesco Clubcard

Why we like it:

  • once you register/ sign in all you have to do is click 'My Vouchers' on the left
  • quick, free and easy to register
  • once registered you can exchange the vouchers for rewards including restaurants and days out
  • vouchers are worth 4 times as much on certain rewards

Watch out:

  • after two years your vouchers expire
  • once vouchers are spent on rewards it is final
  • you will need your Clubcard number to register

The inside track

  • If you have a winning National Lottery ticket you have 180 days to claim. You’ll need a ticket and a prize claim form which you can get form the National Lottery Website You can claim all prizes below £50,000 from designated National Lottery Post Offices or by post at Accounts Department, PO Box 287, Watford, WD18 9TT.Above £50,000 and you’ll need to go to a National Lottery Regional Centre
  • If you have any old money - The Bank of England will ALWAYS pay face value for withdrawn bank notes. You can take them to the Bank of England in London or download the form to post your cash
  • You can even exchange damaged bank notes (washing machine!) by post using a special claims form or call the enquiry line on 0113 244 1711
  • If you know where a deceased relative held accounts but aren't sure how to get it back you can visit the BBA website  for more details
  • Make sure you're not missing out on any hidden refunds like compensation for delayed trains, rebates for uniform costs and PPI claims



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