Louisiana Moving Cash from Dormant Sports Betting Accounts to Unclaimed Property Fund
Louisiana will soon move cash from inactive sports wagering accounts to the state’s unclaimed property fund. That will potentially giving the state access to bettors’ forgotten funds.
Under Act 510, which was signed into law by Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-LA) earlier this month, the state treasury can move money from a sports wagering account to the unclaimed property fund. That’s only if the account in question is inactive for three years. That compares with five years for other distributable property ushered into the unclaimed fund.
Property distributable in the course of a demutualization, rehabilitation, or related reorganization of an insurance company, two years after the date of the demutualization or other event covered herein if, at the time of the demutualization or other event covered herein, the last known address of the owner on the book and records of the holder is known to be incorrect, or distributions or statements are returned by the post office as undeliverable, and the owner has not communicated in writing with the holder or its agent regarding the interest, or otherwise communicated with the holder regarding the interest as evidenced by a memorandum or other record on file with the holder or its agent,” according to text of the legislation.
The law goes into effect on Aug. 1, 2022. In the state, sports betting is permitted in 55 of 64 parishes.
Louisiana Sports Betting Poised to Take Off
The first full month of regulated sports wagering in Louisiana was February, and data indicated bettors there are getting in on the action.
That’s without the benefit of LSU football or New Orleans Saints games, indicating that when the 2022 football season kicks off, the state could be in for a substantial increase in sports betting revenue. That could be a sign some accounts that are now inactive could see more activity, which makes sense, because football is the most wagered-on sport in the US.
Louisiana’s online/mobile sports wagering market is among the most competitive and vibrant in the country. Operators there include Bartstool Sportsbook, BetMGM, Bet Rivers, Caesars Sportsbook, DraftKings, FanDuel, and WynnBet, among others.
Overall, Louisiana is one of the largest gaming markets in the US. Dominant land-based casino operators there include Caesars Entertainment and Penn National Gaming.
Louisiana Moves Cash from Other Accounts
While notifying account holders, states often move money from dormant accounts to unclaimed property funds.
As Louisiana State Treasurer John Schroder notes, the state already employs similar tactics with inactive Amazon, eBay, iTunes, and PayPal accounts.
“The money can’t help stimulate Louisiana’s economy while it’s sitting gathering dust in an account somewhere,” said Schroder in an interview with BRProud.com. “A three-year holding period brings the accounts into Unclaimed Property’s custody sooner, and we have a better chance of finding the owners (or their heirs) if we start looking for them sooner rather than later.”