Courts and Civil Procedure – Courts

Conditional Escheat of Unclaimed Funds in Court Registries

SECTION 8-12-3

§ 8-12-3. Claim for escheated funds.

(a) Any person who claims a right to money or funds paid to the general fund by the supreme court, the superior court, the family court, the district court, the workers' compensation court and/or the traffic tribunal pursuant to § 8-12-2, may file a complaint in the superior court within and for the county of Providence within three (3) years after the funds are deposited in the general fund. The complaint shall be subject to the superior court rules of civil procedure and shall follow the course of equity. The complaint shall be filed against the state, and service of process shall be made upon the administrator of the state courts in person or at his or her respective office with someone in charge of the office. The attorney general shall appear and represent the state in the action. The superior court shall hear the complaint, and in case the final determination of the complaint is in favor of the plaintiff, the court shall enter its judgment directing the administrator of the state courts to repay to the plaintiff so much of the fund as the plaintiff has shown himself or herself entitled to receive, together with interest at a rate not to exceed six percent (6%) per annum on that amount, together with the costs of the action as taxed, in accordance with the rules of civil procedure. The interest shall begin to accumulate on the date the sum is received by the general fund and shall cease on the earlier of fifteen (15) years following receipt or the date on which payment is made to the owner. Upon issuance of the order, the clerk shall immediately forward to the administrator of the state courts the execution based upon the judgment and including costs as taxed. The general fund will pay the amount named in the execution to the party entitled to the amount.

(b) In case the action is determined in favor of the state, the determination shall operate as a final bar against the claimant or his or her or its representatives. In the event the action is decided in favor of the claimant, review may be had by the supreme court in its discretion on petition for writ of certiorari, which must be filed within twenty (20) days by the attorney general following the judgment of the superior court.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1977, ch. 126, § 1; P.L. 1981, ch. 130, § 1; P.L. 1992, ch. 133, art. 100, § 1; P.L. 2000, ch. 452, § 1; P.L. 2010, ch. 231, § 1; P.L. 2010, ch. 238, § 1.)