A common item seen in a dry cleaner’s shop are wedding dresses and other garments that have not been collected by their owners. In Queensland, these items and items in similar situations are dealt with under the Disposal of Uncollected Goods Act 1967 (Qld).
It may not be widely known that in the case where a customer leaves their goods at a shop in excess of six (6) months after the customer was notified that their items were ready for collection, they are classified as uncollected goods. Goods can be left for repairs, inspections, storage or generally any other reason.
Some other examples of this include, but are not limited to:-
- cars left at a mechanics;
- electronic items left at an electronic repair shop; and
- boats and boat trailers left in a trailer yard.
The organisation holding the goods for the customer for more than six (6) months is entitled to sell the goods to recover their costs that accrued while the goods remained uncollected. These costs may include:-
- reasonable storage;
- advertising; and
The goods may be sold by first displaying an obvious sign at your place of business. The sign must include details to the following effect:-
“The Disposal of Uncollected Goods Act 1967 covers inspection, custody, storage, repair and other treatment of goods. Under this Act, uncollected goods may be sold six months after the date on which they were ready for collection”
If the goods remain uncollected, an advertisement that describes the goods that are uncollected must be placed in a Queensland-wide and a local newspaper.
The goods can be sold at a public auction 28 days after the advertisement has appeared in the newspapers.
An important factor to remember in this process is the distribution of the proceeds of the sale. After the goods have been sold and your costs have been deducted, the remaining money must be paid to the customer. Any unclaimed money must be paid to the Public Trustee after 14 days.
Should you require our advice or assistance regarding the process of selling uncollected goods, please do not hesitate to contact our office and arrange an appointment to discuss your situation.