Employees who are owed certain employee entitlements after losing their job because their employer went bankrupt or into liquidation may be able to get financial help from the Australian Government.
This help is available through the Fair Entitlements Guarantee (FEG) if their employer went bankrupt or entered liquidation on or after 5 December 2012 or through the General Employee Entitlements and Redundancy Scheme (GEERS) if their employer went bankrupt or entered liquidation before 5 December 2012.
Fair Entitlements Guarantee (FEG) is a legislative safety net scheme of last resort, with assistance available for:
- wages—up to 13 weeks of unpaid wages
- annual leave
- long service leave
- payment in lieu of notice—maximum of 5 weeks
- redundancy pay—maximum of 4 weeks per full year of service
To be eligible for Fair Entitlements Guarantee (FEG) assistance, former employees must meet all of the eligibility requirements outlined in the Fair Entitlements Guarantee Act 2012.
The preferred way to lodge a claim for assistance is online at FEG Online Services.
More information on eligibility, how to apply and lodging a claim for assistance is available.
A special scheme of financial assistance for contract outworkers in the textile, clothing and footwear industry became available on 15 May 2013 under the Fair Entitlements Guarantee. For more information, read the TCF contract outworkers scheme Fact Sheet.
If you have lost your job and believe you are owed outstanding employee entitlements, but your employer is not in liquidation or bankrupt, then you can seek further information from the Fair Work Ombudsman, the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC), or from the insolvency practitioner looking after the business affairs of your former employer.
If your employer is still operating a business, the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) may be able to provide information about the employer’s obligations to meet unpaid employee entitlements.
The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC), enforces and regulates company and financial services laws to protect consumers, investors and creditors. Employees of abandoned companies who are owed employee entitlements can submit a request to ASIC to wind up the company.
If a Receiver and Manager or Administrator has been appointed to your employer (or a Debt Agreement Administrator has been appointed in the case of an individual or partnership employer), you may contact the appointed insolvency practitioner for information about the future direction of the employer. To check if a company is in liquidation or external administration, you can do a business names or organisations search on ASIC Connect or search the insolvency notices.
Any workers who are made redundant are eligible for employment services from a Job Services Australia provider based on their level of need and personal circumstances. To find out more about this assistance you can call the Employment Services Information Line on 13 62 68 or you can contact Centrelink on 13 28 50.
Centrelink can assess your situation and work out what services you are eligible for, including eligibility for income support. Centrelink can also offer free, unbiased financial information for employees who are made redundant. More information is available at www.humanservices.gov.au/fis
Want to know more?
- Call 1300 135 040
If you have difficulty speaking or understanding English call the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) on 131 450 for the cost of a local call. Ask TIS National to call the Fair Entitlements Guarantee on
1300 135 040.
If you are deaf, or have a hearing impairment or speech impairment, contact us through the National Relay Service (NRS) in two easy steps:
- Choose your preferred NRS access point
- give the Fair Entitlements Guarantee phone number
1300 135 040.
The Fair Entitlements Guarantee Act 2012 commenced on 5 December 2012 and replaces the General Employee Entitlements and Redundancy Scheme (GEERS). It establishes a legislative basis for certain unpaid entitlements that are owed to employees who lose their job due to insolvency of their employer.