Searching for owners of unclaimed money in Halls Creek

The Registrar of Indigenous Corporations, Anthony Beven is encouraging former Community Development Employment Projects (CDEP) participants in the Halls Creek region in Western Australia to check if they have any unclaimed wages owing to them.

Ngoonjuwah Council Aboriginal Corporation (in liquidation) (Ngoonjuwah) ran the former CDEP program in the Halls Creek region in Western Australia until it was placed into liquidation in August 2007. Since then the liquidators have been trying to track down all former CDEP participants owed money by Ngoonjuwah. Some payments have been made but many people could not be located or cheques were returned to sender or never cashed.

The liquidators have been unable to locate 227 former Ngoonjuwah CDEP participants that are owed money. The amounts range from $11 to as high as $3682 and the total amount unclaimed is $189,093.23.

The liquidators of Ngoonjuwah have transferred the unclaimed money to the Registrar. The Registrar holds unclaimed monies on trust.

‘It’s been seven years since the CDEP program at Ngoonjuwah ended, so I expect some of the former CDEP participants may have forgotten about this money by now,’ said the Registrar, Anthony Beven. ‘Ideally I would like to see these funds paid to the rightful owners. Most of the former CDEP participants would be on low incomes and every dollar helps.’

Since the unclaimed money was paid to the Registrar 40 former CDEP participants owed money have already been located by the Registrar.

Sid Michels, a staff member from the Registrar’s office, will be in Halls Creek in coming weeks to help find more of Ngoonjuwah’s former CDEP participants that are owed money. To make sure the right people are paid, a claim form needs to be completed and proof of identity provided. Mr Michels will assist people to complete the claim form.

There are no fees or costs associated with making a claim.

This is the first time that unclaimed monies have been transferred to the Registrar by a liquidator of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporation. The Registrar doesn’t hold any unclaimed monies from any other former CDEP providers.

For privacy reasons the Registrar is unable to publish the names of the former CDEP participants that have unclaimed money owed to them.

Sid Michels from the Registrar’s office will be in Halls Creek on the following dates to help people make a claim and to answer any questions.

20–24 October and 3–7 November

To book a time to see Sid and lodge a claim please call 0477 718 958 or email sid.michels@oric.gov.au.

For more information please contact:

Lisa Hugg
(02) 6146 4738 or 0477 762 290
ORIC MR1415-12
17 October 2014