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Due Diligence – The Way to Customers’ and States’ Hearts

Posted by on in UP Best Practices
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 Due Diligence is the act of sending out letters to your lost owners or publishing their names in newspapers.  Almost every jurisdiction has laws that require companies to perform due diligence. The most common requirement is to send letters 120 days to 60 days before your filing is due. You’ll definitely want to meet each state’s requirements but I believe you should do more.

Many of your lost owners are likely customers whose business you wish to keep. I encourage you to send a round of customer service letters as soon as you can. The earlier you reach out to the customer, the better your chances of making contact and renewing your business relationship. 

You’ll still be required to perform due diligence within the states’ required timeframes, which will give you a second chance to reconnect with the remaining lost owners.

Whatever you do, do not ignore the requirement to perform due diligence. Many states now have a sworn affidavit on their coversheets stating that due diligence has been performed. You definitely don’t want an officer of your company signing off on something you did not do.

How do the states know if you have performed due diligence? Many times, it is quite obvious. Most states also have a requirement to send letters to owners and/or publish their names in newspapers. If they find a large percentage of the owners you could not find, your due diligence will come into question.

So please do the right thing for your business, for your customers, and for the states. Everyone wins when due diligence practices are followed. You could also greatly decrease the number of properties you will have to report.     
 
 

 
   

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Comments

  • Guest
    NoEscheat Thursday, 02 February 2012

    Lost business...

    In our industry, a dormant account equates to lost business. Lost value to our membership, lost opportunities to help our members reach their financial goals. Starting the process earlier is best in my opinion as it will create a stronger bond between the member and our financial institution; creating a lasting relationship. Member/consumer needs change over time, so just because they may not respond to onboarding, doesn't mean that three or five years later (or sooner) they aren't going to be interested in a used car loan for their now teenage son or daughter. I have tested email and voice blast campaigns with minimal success in an attempt to contact owners. Of course, these were on 3 and 5 year dormant properties so again, getting to them sooner may be the key. Of course, we followed-up with due diligence which is where we received the greatest response.

  • Danielle Herring
    Danielle Herring Thursday, 02 February 2012

    RE:Lost business...

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience, NoEscheat!

    One thing everyone can keep in mind is that the customer service notifications aren't limited to letters. You can get really creative with your methods and see what works best.

  • Guest
    Troy White Friday, 03 February 2012

    Business Retention

    As I was working for a mid-size credit union in the mid-90's, member retention was second only to new member attraction. We did what we could to find lost account holders and retain that business. Often times, the member knew the account was there, but was intent on letting the money grow with interest. Regardless, the members we found were always thankful that we contacted them.

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Guest Sunday, 26 October 2014
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