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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Title XL
Chapter 717
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F.S. 717.135
717.135 Recovery agreements and purchase agreements for claims filed by a claimant’s representative; fees and costs.
(1) In order to protect the interests of owners of unclaimed property, the department shall adopt by rule a form entitled “Unclaimed Property Recovery Agreement” and a form entitled “Unclaimed Property Purchase Agreement.”
(2) The Unclaimed Property Recovery Agreement and the Unclaimed Property Purchase Agreement must include and disclose all of the following:
(a) The total dollar amount of unclaimed property accounts claimed or sold.
(b) The total percentage of all authorized fees and costs to be paid to the claimant’s representative or the percentage of the value of the property to be paid as net gain to the purchasing claimant’s representative.
(c) The total dollar amount to be deducted and received from the claimant as fees and costs by the claimant’s representative or the total net dollar amount to be received by the purchasing claimant’s representative.
(d) The net dollar amount to be received by the claimant or the seller.
(e) For each account claimed, the unclaimed property account number.
(f) For the Unclaimed Property Purchase Agreement, a statement that the amount of the purchase price will be remitted to the seller by the purchaser within 30 days after the execution of the agreement by the seller.
(g) The name, address, e-mail address, phone number, and license number of the claimant’s representative.
(h)1. The manual signature of the claimant or seller and the date signed, affixed on the agreement by the claimant or seller.
2. Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter to the contrary, the department may allow an apparent owner, who is also the claimant, to sign the agreement electronically for claims of $2,000 or less. All electronic signatures on the Unclaimed Property Recovery Agreement and the Unclaimed Property Purchase Agreement must be affixed on the agreement by the claimant or seller using the specific, exclusive eSignature product and protocol authorized by the department.
(i) The social security number or taxpayer identification number of the claimant or seller, if a number has been issued to the claimant or seller.
(j) The total fees and costs, or the total discount in the case of a purchase agreement, which may not exceed 30 percent of the claimed amount. If the total fees and costs exceed 30 percent, the fees and costs shall be reduced to 30 percent and the net balance shall be remitted directly by the department to the claimant.
(3) For an Unclaimed Property Purchase Agreement form, proof that the purchaser has made payment must be filed with the department along with the claim. If proof of payment is not provided, the claim is void.
(4) A claimant’s representative must use the Unclaimed Property Recovery Agreement or the Unclaimed Property Purchase Agreement as the exclusive means of entering into an agreement or a contract with a claimant or seller to file a claim with the department.
(5) Fees and costs may be owed or paid to, or received by, a claimant’s representative only after a filed claim has been approved and if the claimant’s representative used an agreement authorized by this section.
(6) A claimant’s representative may not use or distribute any other agreement of any type, conveyed by any method, with respect to the claimant or seller which relates, directly or indirectly, to unclaimed property accounts held by the department or the Chief Financial Officer other than the agreements authorized by this section. Any engagement, authorization, recovery, or fee agreement that is not authorized by this section is void. A claimant’s representative is subject to administrative and civil enforcement under s. 717.1322 if he or she uses an agreement that is not authorized by this section. This subsection does not prohibit lawful nonagreement, noncontractual, or advertising communications between or among the parties.
(7) The Unclaimed Property Recovery Agreement and the Unclaimed Property Purchase Agreement may not contain language that makes the agreement irrevocable or that creates an assignment of any portion of unclaimed property held by the department.
(8) When a claim is approved, the department may pay any additional account that is owned by the claimant but has not been claimed at the time of approval, provided that a subsequent claim has not been filed or is not pending for the claimant at the time of approval.
(9) This section does not supersede s. 717.1241.
History.s. 36, ch. 87-105; s. 1, ch. 91-261; s. 2, ch. 94-191; s. 22, ch. 96-301; s. 30, ch. 2001-36; s. 1889, ch. 2003-261; s. 139, ch. 2004-390; s. 22, ch. 2005-163; s. 7, ch. 2016-90; s. 42, ch. 2016-165; s. 6, ch. 2021-144; s. 71, ch. 2023-144.