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I received a letter from Telstra today apologising for continuing to charge me for my NBN connection till 31 Dec 2019, when I had transferred it to another  provider on 30 Dec 2019. They said they were sending me a cheque for $5.00 to refund the extra charges, and the cheque should arrive in the next four weeks.


I received the cheque two days ago.

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Like thousands of others, I received a small insurance refund from NRMA- in the form of a cheque. 

That meant a trip into town on the day our bank is open. I bet the whole exercise cost much more than the refund value.


Since most, if not all those affected have existing NRMA accounts, why in blazes didn’t they just credit it to next year’s renewals?

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Isn't it simpler and cheaper to just credit your bank account. I am guessing they have the details on file or a direct debit is set up for the majority of their customers? For those where they haven't got the details, hold the credit until the bank account details are provided or the next bill is issued - whichever comes first - and apply accordingly.


However, there is a method behind their madness. Say it costs them, I don't know.. $2 to issue the refund and pay the transaction costs.. A lot of people are really lazy... and if it's a faff for $5 to go to the bank and pay in the cheque.. they simply won't. And the reality is, a lot of people are simply too busy to worry about it.. in other words, between work, kids, school, taxi-driving, the time to bank the cheque is worth more than the value of the cheque.. So, if enough people just write it off, it saves the telco a lot more money than they spend...

Edited by Jerry_Atrick
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Yep - they would have to show it on the balance sheet. Don't know Aussie accounting standards, but over here, it is 6 months only... You can request a new cheque from the issuer if it hasn't been cashed within the 6 months... But, if someone is willing to write off the $5 cheque, what are the chances if 5 years they will cash it? Will have been thrown out years ago.


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When refund cheques, inactive bank account funds, unclaimed insurance payouts, and lost share payments are not cashed here in Oz, they go into an unclaimed monies fund. If you can prove the money is yours, you can get it anytime.

But the procedure for proving the funds are yours, is onerous to say the least. You need reams of paperwork proving the money is rightfully yours, and the paperwork all has to be certified as being true by a JP or other official.


The brother, SIL and myself were in partnership between 1965 and 1995, and we moved premises, after which time we apparently were sent a cheque from a local grain-seller for $80 - which was sent to the old address, and then returned uncashed.

The money ended up in the unclaimed funds account - but I've figured out the effort in recovering the $80 is more than its worth. I have to provide evidence of a partnership contract to claim the money, but we never ever wrote one up.


Some of the unclaimed amounts in the fund are quite staggering. I seem to recall one estate distribution was $600,000 - and it was unclaimed because no living relatives could be found.






Edited by onetrack
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Wow. You got a refund from Telstra. That goes against all their previous records. My experience with them is that they will keep billing you for a service they are not providing. There is only one business with a worse record for false billing and that is BOC, which used to be CIG, the welding gas supplier.

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Spacey, unclaimed superannuation monies goes to the ATO, and if your brother has an unclaimed super balance, and no-one else has made a claim on it, you can apply to collect it.

If your brother left descendants, they would have been entitled to collect it. One needs to produce a lot of paperwork and verification to claim "lost" super, it's a gold mine area for scammers.



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