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LawAccess NSW > Representing Yourself - LawAssist

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What if my employer can't pay me? 

If your employer is having financial problems, they may:

  • become bankrupt (if they are an individual)
  • go into liquidation (if they are a company).

This means that they don't have enough money to pay their debts and will usually have to stop trading. If this happens they may not be able to pay all of the wages or entitlements that you are owed.

You may be able to recover some of what is owed to you under the:

  • General Employee Entitlements Redundancy Scheme (GEERS), if your employer went bankrupt or into liquidation before 5 December 2012, or 
  • ​Fair Entitlements Guarantee (FEG) if your employer went bankrupt or into liquidation on or after 5 December 2012

and your employment ended because your employer went into liquidation. 

To be eligible under either GEERS or FEG, your employment needs to have ended:

  • because your employer became insolvent, or
  • less than six months before the appointment of an insolvency practitioner, or
  • on or after the appointment of an insolvency practitioner.

 The time limit for making a claim under GEERS or FEG is 12 months from the date you were dismissed or the date your employer went bankrupt or into liquidation, whichever is the latest.

You may be able to recover:

  • up to three months unpaid wages
  • unpaid annual leave
  • up to five weeks unpaid payment in lieu of notice
  • unpaid long service leave
  • up to four weeks redundancy pay for each full year of employment.

If you want to make a claim under GEERS or FEG, you should get legal advice.

You can also:


Further inf​​ormation

Department of Employment

GEERS/FEG Hotline 
1300 135 040​