Posted on May 3, 2017 by JMS Advisory Group |
Back in 2012, the Illinois State Treasury renamed its ‘Cash Dash’ unclaimed property program to “iCash” – presumably to relate more closely to the new technological generation of “i”-products. For whatever the reason, the name changed, but the program remained one of the friendliest and most reasonable from a holder perspective. Things changed again this year with the introduction of HB 2603 in the Illinois legislature.
The bill would incorporate a number of provisions proffered in the Uniform Law Commission’s Revised Uniform Unclaimed Property Act (RUUPA) and adds a ’transitional provision’ implementing a reversal of the state’s longstanding B2B exemption retroactively. Additionally, the bill would include gift cards as property subject to escheat (something which is optional in RUUPA) and get rid of the state’s exemption for B2B transactions. Both of these developments are troubling. Presently only certain gift cards are reportable as unclaimed property, and a change there would likely only affect certain industries (e.g. retail, restaurants, etc.). However, the proposed change to the current B2B exemption would be egregiously unprecedented and far-reaching. The transitional provision in HB 2603 would require holders who have taken advantage of the B2B exemption over the last several years to report and remit all B2B property that was previously exempted with last contact dates up to 15 years prior on their 2018 report. Certainly there is a question as to the Constitutionality of this type of provision, but it’s also clearly a money-grab perpetuated by a state mired in a deep fiscal crisis.
Luckily, this bill has been stalled in the House Rules Committee since March 31st, and may not see further action in this legislative session. However, because of its introduction this term, it is very likely to be carried over into next year’s session. JMS will continue to track this closely – stay tuned to our blog for this and other unclaimed property developments.