Reclaim your lost super or the government will take it

AUSTRALIANS with unclaimed money in bank accounts will have an extra five months time to get their money out before the Federal Government removes the cash to bolster its surplus next year.

There was heated debate in parliament on Tuesday over a bill to strip unclaimed monies from Australian bank and superannuation accounts.

The bill would cut the amount of time that money can stay in an inactive account from seven to three years, before it is defined as "lost or unclaimed".

While the bill previously had a time limit of December 31 for people to claim such money, the deadline was extended to May 31, 2013 on Tuesday.

Among the affected cuts to the "lost or unclaimed period", would be superannuation, first home buyer, and other accounts.

The government's estimates put the benefit to the 2012-13 Budget would be in the realm of $886 million over the forward estimates, if people do not claim their money by the due date.

The bill was debated at length during parliamentary sittings on Tuesday, and was expected to be passed by the House of Representatives before the end of the day.

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