Code of the District of Columbia

§ 41–135. Interest and penalties.

(a) Any person who fails to pay or deliver property within the time prescribed by this chapter shall be required to pay interest at the rate of 1 1/2% per month or fraction of a month on the property or value of the property from the date the property should have been paid or delivered.

(b) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (c) of this section, a holder who fails to report, pay, or deliver property within the time prescribed under this chapter, or fails to perform other duties imposed by this chapter, shall pay to the Mayor, in addition to the interest as provided in subsection (a) of this section, a civil penalty of $200 for each day the report, payment, or delivery is withheld, or the duty is not performed, up to a maximum of $10,000.

(c) A holder who willfully fails to report, pay, or deliver property within the time prescribed under this chapter, or fails to perform other duties imposed by this chapter, shall pay to the Mayor, in addition to the interest as provided in subsection (a) of this section, a civil penalty of $1,000 for each day the report, payment, or delivery is withheld, or the duty is not performed, up to a maxim of $25,000, plus 25% of the value of any property that should have been paid or delivered.

(d) The interest or penalty or any part of the interest or penalty as imposed in subsection (b) or (c) of this section may be waived by the Mayor if the person’s failure to pay or deliver property is satisfactorily explained to the Mayor and if the failure has resulted from a mistake by the person in understanding or applying the law or the facts which require that person to pay or deliver property as provided in this chapter.

(e) For purposes of this section, the term “person” also includes an officer or employee of a corporation, or member or employee of a partnership or association, who as an officer, employee, or member is responsible to report, pay, or deliver abandoned property to the Mayor as required under this chapter.

(f) A holder who fails to exercise due diligence as provided in § 41-117 will be assessed a $10 penalty per item.


(Mar. 5, 1981, D.C. Law 3-160, § 135, 27 DCR 5150; Sept. 29, 1992, D.C. Law 9-161, § 2(s), 39 DCR 5696; Mar. 20, 1998, D.C. Law 12-60, § 1701(q), 44 DCR 7378.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 42-235.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 41-130 and § 41-136.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary amendment of section, see § 1701(q) of the Fiscal Year 1998 Revised Budget Support Emergency Act of 1997 (D.C. Act 12-152, October 17, 1997, 44 DCR 6196), and see § 1701(q) of the Fiscal Year 1998 Revised Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 1997 (D.C. Act 12-239, January 13, 1998, 45 DCR 508).

Temporary Legislation

Section 1701(q) of D.C. Law 12-59 rewrote (b), (c), and (d); and added (f).

Section 2001(b) of D.C. Law 12-59 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 34 of the Uniform Unclaimed Property Act (1981 Act).