Hundreds of millions of pounds of dormant assets will be “unlocked” to support charities throughout the coronavirus pandemic, it has been announced.
According to the Government, some £800 million could be made available by releasing cash from unclaimed accounts across the insurance and pensions, investment, wealth management, and securities sectors.
The news comes after the Dormant Assets Scheme was expanded from bank and building society accounts to include assets in these new sectors.
Under the scheme, assets that have been classified as dormant and cannot be reunited with their owners are transferred to the administrator, Reclaim Fund Limited (RFL), and are distributed to social and environmental initiatives via The National Lottery Community Fund (TNLCF).
The latest figures suggest that since 2011, 30 banks and building societies participating in the Dormant Assets Scheme have released over £745 million from dormant accounts that have been inactive for at least 15 years.
Approximately £150 million of this was “unlocked” in May 2020 to support the charity sector during the first and second national lockdown, while hundreds of millions of pounds more may be released this year to further support not-for-profit organisations.
Commenting on the report, Oliver Dowden, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said: “Funds raised through the existing Dormant Assets Scheme have already made a huge difference to vulnerable people and communities across the UK, especially during the pandemic.
“Expanding the scheme will mean hundreds of millions more for good causes, helping us to build back stronger in the years to come.”
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