American flag flies along the California coastline

California voluntary compliance program update

The California State Controller’s (SCO) Voluntary Compliance Program (VCP) is now up and running, providing a way for companies to report past-due unclaimed property without the automatic assessment of interest at 12% per annum by the state.

Recently, the SCO website has been updated by the addition of a direct link to the application, allowing companies to apply to the program directly. Prior to this, the state was in the process of implementing the program and required interested companies to complete a survey first in order to receive an official application to the VCP from the SCO.

Some companies that have applied to the VCP have already been accepted into the program. As part of the acceptance process, the holders have been notified that at least two people from their company must participate in the state’s unclaimed property training program along with several dates on which the training would be available.

Companies accepted into the VCP have also received work plans and a timeline which confirm the date the company was accepted into the program, when due diligence should be completed, and the dates when the Notice Report and Remit Report are due. It is worth noting that the due dates for the Repots appear to have been calculated based on the date the company was accepted into the VCP and do not align with the statutorily required repot dates (i.e., October 31 and June 15).

The SCO website reminds companies that the VCP is an on-going program, and that the SCO will continue to accept applications and provide due dates to subsequent enrollees. Keep in mind however, that a company may only participate in the VCP program once every 5 years (subject to approval by the State). Therefore, it is critical to ensure that a thorough review of a company’s potential exposure for all property types is completed prior to filing under the California VCP.

As a reminder, companies interested in participating in the VCP must meet certain eligibility requirements, and the SCO will NOT consider applications from holders that:

  • Are currently subject to an unclaimed property examination
  • Are currently subject to civil or criminal investigation
  • Currently have unpaid interest assessments from the past five years

For more information about the VCP, see the SCO’s VCP Website.

Please reach out to any member of the Baker Tilly Unclaimed Property Management Team if you have any questions about or need assistance with completing the California VCP application and the overall VCP process. Our national team has the experience to assist your company in navigating the California VCP and any other unclaimed property issues likely to impact your company.

The information provided here is of a general nature and is not intended to address the specific circumstances of any individual or entity. In specific circumstances, the services of a professional should be sought. Tax information, if any, contained in this communication was not intended or written to be used by any person for the purpose of avoiding penalties, nor should such information be construed as an opinion upon which any person may rely. The intended recipients of this communication and any attachments are not subject to any limitation on the disclosure of the tax treatment or tax structure of any transaction or matter that is the subject of this communication and any attachments.

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