Lost & Found FAQ Answers
- Online - Use the new Lost & Found Property Inquiry Form to electronically file your information with the Lost & Found Office.
- In Person - Visit the Penn Station Lost & Found Office to check for your property and/or to complete a Lost & Found Property Inquiry Form.
- By Phone - You can call 511, say "LIRR" then say "Lost & Found". An LIRR representative will explain LIRR's Lost & Found Property System and what you can do to help get your property back.
What is the LIRR Lost & Found Lost Property Recovery System?
LIRR has a Lost & Found Lost Property Recovery System that is in place to help re-unite recovered property with its owner. The process includes completing a Lost & Found Property Inquiry Form, and then allowing five to seven business days for property to be recovered and turned in to the Penn Station Lost & Found Office. During this process, we ask that our customers be cooperative and patient.
Where is the LIRR Lost & Found Office located?
The LIRR Lost & Found Office is located at:
Penn Station - LIRR Concourse Level
Main Gate area (across from Tracks 13 & 14; to right of 7th Ave escalators)
Weekdays: 7:20 AM - 7:20 PM
Closed: Saturday, Sunday and Holidays
How will I be contacted if my property is found?
First, make sure that you file a Lost & Found Property Inquiry Form. If there is a potential match with a recovered article in the Lost & Found Office, you will be contacted via the email address, that you have provided. Please complete only one Lost & Found Property Inquiry Form for each occurrence in which you have lost your property.
Can somebody radio the train and see if my property is there?
No. For safety and security reasons LIRR employees are not permitted to disrupt the radio communication between train dispatchers and the on-board train crew.
What if I go to the train yard to meet the train? Can I get my property back?
No. For safety and security reasons, customers and members of the general public are not permitted in non-public areas on LIRR property. In addition, our train equipment is constantly on the move and chances are that your attempt to recover your property from a train yard would be futile.
What if I call the MTA Police?
Unless the article has been turned over to them and they have the article in their immediate possession, the MTA Police will not be able to help search for your property.
What if I go to a Station or Ticket Office?
Unless the article is immediately turned in to the ticket office, all recovered property - whether it's left behind on a train, a platform, a ticket office or in a station waiting area - is sent to the Lost & Found Office located in Penn Station.
How does lost property get to the LIRR Lost & Found Office?
Each year, nearly 15,000 items are turned in to the LIRR Lost & Found Office. All LIRR employees are responsible for taking reasonable measures to ensure that every article left behind by customers is secured and placed in a non-public area before it eventually reaches the Lost & Found Office in Penn Station.
- Systemwide Stations:
Regardless of where property is lost, all recovered articles are sent to the Penn Station Lost & Found Office. LIRR personnel will categorize the item, assign a Lost & Found property tag, and then enter the property information into the system. A designated LIRR employee will check outlying station system lock box locations on select business days of the week and return to Penn Station Lost & Found within 5 to 7 business days.
- Penn Station:
If an article is recovered from an in-bound train (to Penn Station) during regular business hours, the property will most likely be turned in to the Lost & Found Office or may be deposited in a secure lock box. At Penn Station, a designated LIRR employee will check the lock box daily during regular business hours.
- On a Train:
An article that is recovered on an outbound train may be deposited in a secure lock box or left at a ticket office. An authorized LIRR employee will remove the article, search the property, and attach a property tag before sending it to the Lost & Found Office in a secured (locked) mailbag during regular business hours. Unauthorized LIRR employees and the general public do not have access to the property in these secure drop boxes.
How long is property held in the Lost & Found?
Perishable items are discarded immediately. All other recovered property will be held in the Lost & Found Ofiice for a minimum of ninety days from the day it is recovered. In accordance with state property law, high value items will be held for longer periods of time.
What should I do if I find someone else's property?
A customer who finds an article on LIRR property should turn it in as quickly as possible. You can either turn the property over to an LIRR employee or to the Lost & Found Office located in Penn Station, or to your local ticket office, where you can obtain a receipt for the property. Train service employees cannot issue a receipt for property that is turned over to them.
When do I give up on finding my property?
The vast majority of recovered items are returned within 5 to 7 business days to the Penn Station Lost & Found Office. However, there are unique circumstances when lost articles take longer to be returned to the Penn Station Lost & Found Office.
How can I claim my property from the Lost & Found Office?
You must come to the Penn Station Lost & Found Office to retrieve your lost property. A potential owner must describe the property in detail, may be required to show proof of ownership, must present photo ID, and sign for the return of property. If you are claiming an electronic device, i.e. cell phone or PDA, it would be helpful for you to bring the charger for the device, so it may be powered up to assist in identification.
Can someone else retrieve my property for me?
Yes. Pursuant to state law, an owner representative may retrieve property on behalf of the rightful owner. To do so, the owner must first prove the property is theirs, and then provide an authorization letter that states the name of the owner representative, and authorization that allows them to sign for and pick up the property on their behalf. A copy of the owner's photo ID is needed and the owner's representative will also need to present their own personal photo ID that will be photocopied and kept on file in the Lost & Found Office along with the owner's authorization letter.
I don't live in the area, how do I pick up my property from the Lost & Found?
At the owner's cost, LIRR Lost & Found personnel will work with the owner to return their property via Federal Express. Under these circumstances, the customer should work directly with Fed Ex to get an authorization number (or if they have an existing Fed Ex account they can use that) that the Lost & Found can use to process the Fed Ex paperwork. The Lost & Found is not able to handle cash or a check in this situation.
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