A staggering 185,000 prizes which were sent out as a warrant but never made it to the winning home are waiting to be reclaimed, is has been revealed. National Savings & Investments (NS&I) usually send out the warrants, which are similar to cheques, to the address of the lucky person to inform them of their winning sum. But a problem can occur if the prize is returned to NS&I, because it will not be sent back to the rightful recipient automatically. This can happen if there is an issue with the post or if the Premium Bonds winner has changed address and not notified NS&I.
If the person has signed up for the cash to be paid directly into a bank account, the prize is less likely to get lost.
Figures obtained by MoneySavingExpert under the Freedom of Information Act show that there are 185,654 of these undelivered prizes, worth £8,230,650.
Some of these date back to the very first prize draw in 1957 and with there being no time limit to claim, it is worth checking to see if you are a winner.
An astonishing 2,431 prizes, worth £66,900, were never delivered in March 2018 alone, the report showed.
There are also 1,579,333 unclaimed Premium Bond prizes as of March 2019, worth £61,336,375
To check if you have an unclaimed prize, you will need to go to the NS&I website or download its prize checker app.
Here you will need to ender your Premium Bond holder’s number.
You can also check with your NS&I number, as well as your surname and password, to log into NS&I online.
This will enable you to find your Premium Bond holder’s number on the ‘account details’ page.
Alternatively, you can use NS&I’s tracing service or the My Lost Account website, both of which can track down your Premium Bond details.
To speak to NS&I about potential unclaimed prizes, call 08085 007 007 or use the web chat service.
They can also be contacted by post at: NS&I, Glasgow, G58 1SB.