• Report: #890763

Complaint Review: Vanacor International

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  • Submitted: Wed, May 30, 2012
  • Updated: Mon, November 19, 2012

  • Reported By: Robert A. Allen, Ph.D. — Roseville California United States of America
Vanacor International
4359 Town Center Blvd El Dorado Hills, California United States of America

Vanacor International Failed to provide services as indicated in their agreemnt. Letters were misleading, certainly no ,meeting of the minds, El Dorado Hills , California

*Consumer Comment: My Mom is in the same boat

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: The State cannot govern property that is not in their possession

*Consumer Comment: State Controller's Office Investigator Rules

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Vanacore International's response to client complaint

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Hello, I was contacted by Vanacore International who claimed that there was unclaimed-cash-property available to me. I signed an agreement with them to pay them a finders fee if they obtained this money for me.

They contacted my credit union-where I have an IRA account and asked them what they needed-to give them power of attorney to access my account and remove funds. I checked the Controllers report on line. My credit union account is active and I never had any desire to break my IRA and--this was not a cash account but a retirement account.

The Sequoia Credit union indicated that my IRA was not going to be submitted to the state and said that they were required to --notify- the state and me before any such actions.  If that was their plan--no notice was sent to me and I was not aware that my retirement would be given to the state if I had no activity or additions to this account.

All I am aware of is that Vanacore received information from the controller office and then made 1 phone call to my credit union to determine how to gain accsess to my account.  There was no understanding or agreement on my part that they would "clean out" my existing IRA and then "share the proceeds" with me.

Realizing what they were trying to do I e-mailed Vanacore to stop or end my association with them.  They said I couldn't and that I owed them $ 2153.00 --(I will send documents if needed).

Today I received notice from Vanacore that if I didn't pay their "finders fee" in thirty days they would sue me. 

They were trying to get access to my private account. I feel foolish that I didn't recognize this as, what I consider, to be a scam and I suspect that others might be mislead by the same tactics.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/30/2012 05:29 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Vanacor-International/El-Dorado-Hills-California-95762/Vanacor-International-Failed-to-provide-services-as-indicated-in-their-agreemnt-Letters-890763. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 2Consumer 2Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

My Mom is in the same boat

AUTHOR: Fighting Back - ()

I am glad that someone has written this complaint.  The same thing happened to my mom recently with this company.  She signed the MOU without realizing that the company would have a right to take a finders fee even if nothing was done with her account. 

Technically her account was still active and only the address had to be updated.  I checked on the State controller's website and I am currently in the process of checking with one of their investigators.

In reading the rights on the investigators, they do NOT have the right to enter into a contract with you unless the money is in the controller's possession.

Did you check the status of your account on the unclaimed property site?  I would talk to someone at the state controllers office or talk to an attorney before you receive any further action from the company.  They are definitely in the game to win!

Here is what the State Controller's website shows:

CanI enter into a contract with a potential property owner to get property listed on a pre-escheat notice letter or on the State Controllers Office website that is still in the possession of the business?

No. An Investigator may not enter into a contract with a property owner to locate, deliver, recover, or assist in the recovery of property that is pending transfer from the business to the State Controllers Office (SCO). Once the property is transferred and the SCO has held the property for at least 12 months or published a notice in a newspaper of general circulation, then an Investigator may enter into contract with a property owner. Any signed agreement with a property owner to assist in recovering the property before that time is invalid. Properties pending transfer are identified as N properties (pre-escheat notice) on SCOs website.
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#2 REBUTTAL Owner of company

The State cannot govern property that is not in their possession

AUTHOR: CEO - ()

Vanacore International would like to clarify the unclaimed property laws pertaining to the State of California.  The State can govern property held in their possession that has been formally escheated from a Holding institution.  Once the State receives the property, it is assigned a Property ID Number to identify the account.  They perform proper due-diligence to notify owners of unclaimed property but not all of the accounts are easily identifiable.  Some of the accounts are reported with missing or incorrect information and/or are deceased.  Our firm works under PI License 13515, issued by the State of California Department of Consumer Affairs, wherein we send notification to owners/heirs entitled to unclaimed property. Our in-house resources include proprietary databases, record collections and genealogists.   

If an investigative firm contracts with an owner/heir to recover funds held at the State, they must be in compliance with Code of Civil Procedures Section 1582 which briefly states that the fee cannot exceed 10 percent of the recoverable property, that the agreement is in writing, signed by the owner and the nature and value of the property is fully disclosed. 

In relation to pre-escheat accounts, there is NO valid law that states a company cannot enter into a contract to recover funds that are scheduled to be escheated to the government.  The government does NOT have possession of the funds therefore they cannot govern the property.  In California these pre-escheat accounts are identified as a NOTICE record from the HOLDER during their last 6 months of dormancy.  The owner/heir has a certain time frame to respond to the Holder, not the State, before the funds are sent to the government.  Our firm works directly with the Holder and the client to recover these types of funds.  The State is not an involved party with these recoveries.  

Vanacore has helped recover over 600 million dollars to our clients since 1986.  Our business is a member of several organizations concerning the laws, rules and regulations of unclaimed property including UPPO (Unclaimed Property Professionals Organization); the industry leader in unclaimed property education and compliance. We encourage all of our current and future clients to visit our website to verify our credentials.  
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#3 Consumer Comment

State Controller's Office Investigator Rules

AUTHOR: Luis - ()

The California State Controller's Office clearly prohibits Investigators from entering into a contract with property owners until AFTER the property has been escheated and in the possession of the State Controller's office for at least 12 months or the State Controller's Office has published a notice in a newspaper of general circulation.  If Vanacore International is entering into contracts when the funds have only been reported to the State Controller's Office, but not yet escheated and held in their possession for 12 months, they are violating the law.  This is from the State Controller's Office own FAQ page on their website:

http://www.sco.ca.gov/upd_faq_investigator_claim_about_q08.html#Can_I_enter_into_a_contract_with_a_potential_property_owner_to_get_property_listed_on_a_pre_escheat_notice_letter_or_on_the_State_Controller_s_Office_website_that_is_still_in_the_possession_of_the_business_

When can an Investigator enter into a contract to file a claim?

An Investigator may not enter into a contract with potential owners of abandoned property until after either, (a) the abandoned property has been in the State Controller's Office possession for at least 12 months, or (b) until after the State Controller's Office publishes a notice in a newspaper of general circulation. This means you may not enter into a contract to retrieve property based on the Unclaimed Property notification (pre-escheat letter) sent to owners advising them of a pending transfer of their property to the State Controllers Office by the business.

Records of the State Controller's Office pertaining to unclaimed property are not available for public inspection or copying until after publication of notice of the property or, if publication of notice of the property is not required, until one year after delivery of the property to the State Controller's Office (California Code of Civil Procedure).

The State Controller's Office generally publishes notices in June/July of each year, which is the time period that most abandoned property remit reports are due from holders. You may call our office in late April to obtain the exact date of publication. Information on estates of deceased persons is not subject to time restrictions.

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Can I enter into a contract with a potential property owner to get property listed on a pre-escheat notice letter or on the State Controllers Office website that is still in the possession of the business?

No. An Investigator may not enter into a contract with a property owner to locate, deliver, recover, or assist in the recovery of property that is pending transfer from the business to the State Controllers Office (SCO). Once the property is transferred and the SCO has held the property for at least 12 months or published a notice in a newspaper of general circulation, then an Investigator may enter into contract with a property owner. Any signed agreement with a property owner to assist in recovering the property before that time is invalid. Properties pending transfer are identified as N properties (pre-escheat notice) on SCOs website.

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#4 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Vanacore International's response to client complaint

AUTHOR: CEO - (United States of America)

Vanacore International (VI) had sent notification to Mr. Allen stating that he was entitled to lost assets that were due to be transferred to the government on June 1, 2012.  On May 25, 2012, Mr. Allen signed an Agreement with VI to engage services to collect unclaimed assets on his behalf. After speaking with Mr. Allen on May 25, 2012, a claim package was sent to his personal email disclosing where the funds were held, Sequoia Credit Union.  Emphasis was placed on the urgency of the matter as these assets were scheduled to be escheated (transfer of person's property to the state) on June 1, 2012.  Mr. Allen had confirmed that he would fax over the requested documentation. 

On May 25, 2012 our firm made a phone call to the Holder, Sequoia Credit Union, to stop the escheatment of the funds and request what documentation they would need in order to re-activate the account.  The notice from the California State Controller's office (copy available on hand) stated that the account was inactive since 11/13/2007; meaning there had been no activity on the account since this date.  If an account is dormant (specified period of time in which the property owner does not take action) the Holder must perform proper due dilligence to notify the owners that their property is in danger of being transferred to the State.  VI did not contact Sequoia Credit Union to "access" Mr. Allen's account or attempt to "clean out" the account.  The phone call was to ensure the funds would not be transferred to the government and to state that we would be sending in documents to re-activate the account.
 
On May 27, 2012, VI received an email from Mr. Allen stating to end all association with our company and to rescind all agreements.  This was done after Mr. Allen signed the Agreement and after he circumvented our efforts and contacted Sequoia Credit Union directly.  An invoice was sent due to breach of contract for the agreed upon fee. 

Vanacore International has been in business for 27 years successfully recovering millions of dollars to the rightful owners.  Our extensive expertise and understanding of the complex inheritance laws and laws related to dormant accounts is unparallelled. As licensed private investigators and members of the BBB, we adhere to a strict code of ethics.  For Mr. Allen to accuse our firm to be a scam is ludicrous.  We urge you to review our credentials online and the validity of our business. 
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