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Wednesday, 21 July 1920

Mr CORSER (WIDE BAY, QUEENSLAND) asked the AttorneyGeneral, upon notice -

1.   Is it a fact that the Repatriation Department claims preference over trade creditors for advances made to returned soldiers -(a) covered by bills of sale; (b) on unsecured assets 1

2.   Is it a fact that under section 14 of the Australian Soldiers' Repatriation Act of 1918, which amends the original Act, and section 55 of the Act of 1920, priority in bankruptcy is given to the Repatriation Department on all assets of a returned soldier for all advances made ?

3.   Is it a fact that trade gazettes can be prosecuted criminally if they publish particulars of securities under bills of sale, &c'., given by returned soldiers to the Repatriation Department? .

4.   Is it a fact that the difficulty placed in the way of traders in obtaining particulars of advances made to, and securities held from, returned soldiers by the Repatriation Department, very detrimentallyaffects the credit of all returned soldiers with traders, and retards the formers' chances of success?

5.   Will the Government make provision to obviate this injustice suffered by returned soldiers and the trading community by allowing publication of particulars of securities held by the Repatriation Department?

Mr POYNTON - This question relates to Repatriation, and the Commissioners have supplied me with the following

1.   Yes.

2.   Yes.

3.   The Repatriation Regulations make it an offence to publish in any periodical any extract from the registers of securities kept by the Department.

4.   The registers of securities are available for search by any person on payment of the prescribed fee of1s. The restriction on publication of the contents of the registers is in the interests of the soldiers, and was imposed as the result of representations made by their League.

5.   See answer to No. 4.

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