Dozens of couples have been left in the lurch after Melbourne wedding and reception venue closed down without notice.
The Willows, one of Melbourne’s best known venues, has gone into voluntary liquidation.
The closure has left numerous couples scrambling to find a new venue, and many worried they won’t get their deposit back.
Annie McAlpine, a bride-to-be, was told on Saturday by her cake-maker, the Willows had gone into liquidation.
“We had no idea about his. We didn’t receive any correspondence, our cake maker has called us, luckily she did.”
She said they’d paid a larger deposit to get a discount and were over $7000 out of pocket.
“We’re stuck, with seven and a half thousand dollars down the drain? What do we do? Our wedding is in January, which is peak time, we’re struggling to find a venue.”
She said the couple hadn’t pursued legal options, as they were focused on finding a new venue – taking into account they were now $7,5000 down,
Hannah from West Footscray, was just nine weeks from her wedding and didn’t have a venue.
She told Fifi, Fev and Byron she had family coming down from Sydney.
Like Annie she only heard the news through her celebrant. She had paid her entire wedding – $17,000 after being offered a discount for paying early.
Listen to her here:
What can you do if a business goes into liquidation?
Consumer affairs advises:
When a business goes into liquidation there are two ways consumers can try to get their money back.
If you paid with a credit card, or a debit card and selected the 'credit' option, contact your card provider and request a chargeback. This effectively reverses the credit card charge, and is similar to a refund. Anyone affected should do this as soon as possible, as time limits apply (time limits vary depending on the card).
If you did not pay with a credit card, or you are unable to claim the products or services you have paid for, you can register with the administrator or liquidator as an unsecured creditor.
To find out who the administrator or liquidator is, contact the Australian Securities and Investment Commission.