DC Sues AT&T For Unclaimed Phone Minutes
Suki I submits news that Washington, D.C.’s attorney general has filed suit (District of Columbia vs. AT&T Corp, Superior Court of the District of Columbia), claiming the city has the right, through laws applying to unclaimed property, to unused calling-card balances held in the name of D.C. residents. “The suit claims that AT&T should turn over unused balances on the calling cards of consumers whose last known address was in Washington, D.C. and have not used the calling card for three years. ‘AT&T’s prepaid calling cards must be treated as unclaimed property under district law,’ the attorney general’s office said in a statement. … [That sum] represents some 5 to 20 percent of the total balances purchased by consumers who use the calling cards. States and municipalities have often similarly used unclaimed property laws, known as escheat laws, to claim ownership of unused retail gift card balances.”
Suki I links also to Reason Magazine’s coverage.