In the wake of Mark Udinski's departure from Delaware to Kelmar, Delaware named David Gregor as the new State Escheator. On Friday, Delaware announced that Gregor was named the new Director of Revenue, effective today, January 9.
One significant improvement during Gregor's tenure was the department's increase in claims returned to unclaimed property owners. While at approximately 20% of annual collections, the claims payments is a vast improvement from the 3-6% in prior administrations.
New Delaware State Escheator in 2017?
As Deputy Secretary of Finance, Gregor also served as the State Escheator. The State Escheator is the head of the state's unclaimed property program. Currently, there are several ongoing lawsuits and turmoil that dates back to Udinski's tenure. If you'll remember, Udinski issued audit notices to hundreds of companies immediately prior to leaving state employment. These audits were assigned to his new employer, Kelmar. Those audits and others from Udinski's tenure have been the subject of several recent lawsuits that have dramatically changed the unclaimed property landscape.
Last summer, a federal judge said the state played a game of "gotcha" that shocked the conscience. Other cases are challenging whether the state has the authority to issue and enforce a summons against holders and whether the state has authority to claim foreign address property or must require due diligence.
Barganier is carefully watching the Delaware legislature for new unclaimed property legislation to address these and similar issues raised in litigation. Barganier is also now monitoring the state for the appointment of a new State Escheator. The new Escheator will be making significant decisions on ongoing audits, new audits, and appeals processes, as well as significant influence on legislation and other issues affecting compliance. Stay tuned for more developments!
Delaware: New Division of Revenue Director Appointed Opens in New Window