Grant MacDonald

Justice after 42 years in court marathon
Few lived to see the end of an exhausting court battle, writes Kim Arlington.
It was Bleak House played out in the NSW Supreme Court, with an inheritance dispute that dragged on for so long, many potential beneficiaries never lived to see it resolved.
Grant MacDonald is one of the few still standing.
After fighting a three-year court case while also battling cancer, the pensioner finally secured a share of his great aunt’s estate – 42 years after she died.

Chris Jenkinson

SA Public Trustee
Chris Jenkinson’s 10 year battle against SA’s Public Trustee is set to open an explosive can of worms of systemic mismanagement & accounting errors likely to have affected thousands of their clients’ financial assets going back decades… That could total millions of dollars.
MY COMMENT: Take note of the comments located underneath the video.

If I turn my back on this when I have the evidence, then I’m turning my back on all those people, particularly between the period of 2006 and 2012 where my records show problems, and so I just turn my back on them and that’s not – we’re not comfortable with that. As I said, I feel that there must be some means for the federal government to be able to oversee a situation where, if a state is not abiding by its own laws, then where do you go to get someone to intervene for an Australian citizen? I hope I’ve made sense. I just don’t know where to go. (PDF 10 pages)

Mira Mikulic

Having looked after my widowed and elderly mum for nearly 20 years and providing her with financial, physical and emotional support, my mum chose to leave most of estate, that I helped her to build, to overseas family. Without my knowledge, she appointed the Public Trustee to administer this estate. Foolishly and due to my strong sense of loyalty and compassion for my mum, I always placed her and her needs first and acted in her best interest, to my own detriment. Being under the impression that I would eventually reap the rewards of my efforts from her estate. Her will and a spiteful letter she left me opened my eyes to how she and my family appreciated these efforts on her behalf. I was almost written out of her will, close to being 50 years of age. I suddenly faced everything I worked for over the past 20 years about to be given to people who did very little for mum, including my sister that claimed to be very close to her. I had a choice to walk away with this nothing or to fight for a better share of the estate. I chose the latter and hired Turnbull Hill Partners to represent me in the Family Court. They immediately arranged a caveat on the estate and informed the Public Trustee that I intended to contest mum’s will. Thus began 3 years of personal hell with the Public Trustee, my family and various authorities. I informed the Public Trustee soon after mum’s death that I was the only one caring for mum and building her estate and had detailed proof of this. I offered the relevant family members more just and generous settlements that they, driven by greed, chose to decline. From here on, the Public Trustee, my sister and my family went into a life and death mode to hang on to mum’s estate, in this manner:
  • When I asked them to change the locks on mum’s house due to my sister’s looting the estate, they did so and locked ME out - Allowing my sister to keep on looting.
  • They were happy for my sister having taken mum’s expensive TV, without my permission. Yet they insisted on my giving them less money I collected for selling some of her things, with their permission.
  • They took away whatever was left in the three bedrooms, fully furnished house and valuable garage and gardening tools. Inspite of repeated requests by me, I was never informed of where her things went. They did, however, present the estate with a bill of $300 for the LOSSES that this action incurred
  • Even though there were developers willing to pay $1mil for her property at the time of her death, the Public Trustee refused to release it for sale for 8 months
  • Being the public servants that they are, they happily paid huge water rates on an unoccupied property having a burst pipe. Disconnecting the water obviously never occurred to anyone. Neither did keeping the garden net and tidy, again inspite of my repeated requests.

Paul Contempree

Paul Contempree is the author & publisher of NSWTG EXPOSED.


My message to all of the poor broken people, who have had their lives ruined to some extent, by the NSW Trustee and Guardian.

Due to a lack of satisfaction by various affected victims, to encourage the NSWTG to create a ‘fairer system’, I’m hoping to find somebody, who would be willing to build a Class Action case, against this outlandish Australian Government Department, taking it directly to the High Court of Australia in Canberra.

Several dissatisfied clients of the NSWTG, have contacted me through this website, wanting to be part of a Class Action.

I encourage any person who would like to participate in this endeavour, to contact me via:


Unwilling Ward of the State - Australia

A MAN who spent $200,000 over 10 years on phone sex lines had his affairs taken over by the state after relatives claimed he was suffering dementia.
The 76-year-old retiree is now fighting the long-term guardianship and financial administration orders under which he was placed by the Guardianship and Administration Tribunal in June.
"They have kept me under orders without (sufficient) medical proof that I'm not capable of making my own decisions," he said.
The case raises more concerns about Queensland's guardianship system – which is already the subject of a review by the Queensland Law Reform Commission – including whether the tribunal should be required to seek expert medical opinions when placing people alleged to have diminished capacity under long-term orders.
Carers Queensland, one of two advocacy groups now trying to help the man, said it remained concerned about a number of aspects of the guardianship regime, "particularly about procedures that declare an adult incapable of making his or her own personal and financial decisions".
"It is the most extreme and serious action that can be taken by the state . . . There must be extreme caution taken in exercising such a power," the agency's Brendan Horne said.
In the man's case, the orders made by the tribunal mean the Office of the Adult Guardian and the Public Trustee can control every facet of his life, from where he lives and who he has contact with, to what he can spend money on.
The tribunal's reasons for the November 2006 decision show members of the man's family variously alleged he'd made $20,000 worth of 1902 calls a month over two years, or that he'd spent $200,000 over several years, that he was delusional, had mood swings, practised poor personal hygiene, was incapable of looking after himself and that he had been diagnosed with dementia.
After he was placed under orders, the man contacted a professor of neurology and a respected neuropsychologist and subjected himself to extensive clinical and cognitive testing, including brain scans.
Both specialists, who subsequently provided reports to the tribunal, said he did not have dementia and that he was not of diminished capacity.
The neurologist's report said the neuropsychologist's findings "support my diagnosis that (the man) has no form of dementia and that he is competent to manage his personal and financial affairs".
"But at the last hearing in June, the tribunal said that if I wasn't demented, maybe I was psycho – that's the offensive term the woman chair of the tribunal used," the man said.
"So now I'm arranging to be examined by a psychiatrist and because I don't have control of my finances, I'm putting a bit by each week out of the allowance the Public Trust gives me to live on to pay for it."
Tribunal documents from the April and June hearings show the tribunal members raised the possibility of the man having a psychiatric illness, ruling he was of diminished capacity and extending the guardianship order for two years and the administration order indefinitely.
In its reasons it said: "Whilst the tribunal accepts that (the man) does not have a diagnosis of dementia, there is evidence of cognitive dysfunction which impacts on the nature and effect of his decision-making in respect of the 1902 calls."
The reasons do not show the tribunal recommending the man undergo psychiatric testing to back that finding.
A spokesperson for the family said they supported the tribunal processes and the appointment of the Adult Guardian and the Public Trustee.
Adult Guardian Dianne Pendergast, when asked whether she had concerns about the tribunal's decision to place the man under orders, said she was unable to comment about individual cases because of confidentiality provisions.
The man said he could not remember when exactly he began making the 1902 calls, which can cost up to $5 a minute.
"(It was) 1999 I think. It started out as a bit of fun for me," he said. "It averages, for around 40 years of married life, about $5000 a year and that's a pittance because I never spent any money on myself and I was a very good provider to my family."
When the Public Trustee arrived to physically take his cheque books and freeze his bank accounts, he said he was "shattered".
"I cried all night that night – I had been writing out cheques for 50 or more years and I just couldn't believe this was happening to me," he said.
The man, who is now estranged from his family, said he felt "foolish" about his use of the 1902 numbers. "Look where that's got me," he said.

This is an unusual case. It is not the "usual" elder abuse case. I was very much mistaken that guardianship abuse occurred only in the USA. Another call for reform to the law that was set up to protect the vulnerable in our society.
Source : http://elder-abuse-spotlight.blogspot.com/search?q=Unwilling+ward+of+the+state

The committee to expost the public trustee

The Committee to Expose the Public Trustee is preparing a group submission to the Crime and Corruption Commission and its expected to be lodged within a couple of weeks, depending on availability of relevant kangaroo court transcripts, medical reports etc.

We have identified a number of recurring issues and each and every complainant providing affidavits as part of the joint submission will elaborate on their experiences with the recurring issues. Our intention is to demonstrate conclusive and definitive proof of serious and systemic problems involving not only members of the triune beast (kangaroo court, Adult Guardian and Public Trustee) but also cover-ups by the Premier, Deputy Premier, Attorney General, kangaroo court president and a whole raft of bureaucrazies (MIS-spelling intended).

Disabled man wins 16-year fight with Public Trustee

IN CHARGE: Clinton VanDenBerg (right) is finally able to manage his own finances after a lengthy battle with Public Trustee Queensland. Photo: Max Fleet / NewsMailA DISABLED man has won his fight to regain control of his finances following a "long, hard and arduous" 16-year battle with the State Government body appointed to manage his estate.

Clinton VanDenBerg's life changed forever in 1988, when a 10-tonne semi-trailer, driven by a 17-year-old unlicensed driver, slammed into his family's car. The crash killed his sister, broke vertebrae in his mum's back and left him with a permanent brain injury.

"My life was totally destroyed," he said.

"Because of the fracture to my skull, by order of the court, the Public Trustee Queensland (PTQ) had to handle my finances."

Mr VanDenBerg, now 39, received an $807,000 Supreme Court payout nine years after the harrowing ordeal but his ability to manage his own affairs was restricted when he was placed under financial administration.

Personal stories of contact with the Queensland adult guardianship system

Tbernie-ahimsa-househe main purpose of the Committee to Expose the Public Trustee is exactly that – to expose the Public Trustee. We want to shed some light on the reality of people caught up in the guardianship system. To that end we have decided to publish some personal stories.

Some of our members have been willing to share their stories. Others do not want to compromise their privacy. Others are fearful of retribution that would be suffered by their loved ones if they spoke out. Amongst our committee there are many more nightmare stories than are presented here and we know there are many, many more in Queensland.

If you would like to help us expose the Public Trustee and share your experience of Queensland’s adult guardianship system you are very welcome to do so. Please post your story in the comment section below. Comments here are moderated and will not appear immediately.

If you do tell your story, please do not include any information that identifies yourself, your loved one or any officer of the guardianship system. We will check your stories for this before publishing, other than that you can say what you like.

Click on links to read stories –

Former Public Trustee worker avoids jail

A former Public Trustee of Queensland employee has been spared immediate time behind bars after corruptly providing information to a bidder in a tender process.

Robert Edward Leslie Myers, 55, was on Tuesday sentenced in the Brisbane District Court after pleading guilty to multiple charges including five counts of official corruption.
Myers shielded his face with a bag as he left the Brisbane District Court, where Chief Judge Kerry O'Brien handed him a two-year jail term, wholly suspended for three years.

Former public servant's fraud conviction serves as a warning

Following a Crime and Corruption (CCC) investigation a former Queensland public servant was sentenced today in the Brisbane District Court to two years jail, which was wholly suspended.

Robert Edward Leslie Myers was sentenced after pleading guilty to a fraud offence and a forgery offence.

The former employee of The Public Trustee of Queensland pleaded guilty to using his position to dishonestly obtain $42,000. None of the funds misappropriated were funds held on behalf of Public Trustee clients.

Public trustee suspended amid 'serious allegations'

Peter Carne, pictured in 2014 while speaking at former premier Wayne Goss's memorial service.Queensland's public trustee has been suspended after "serious allegations" were made against him.

Peter Carne oversees 600 staff, who manage finances of incapacitated people and estates of deceased people, across Queeensland.

Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath would not say why Mr Carne had been suspended.

"The Governor in Council has today approved a recommendation by Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath to immediately suspend the Public Trustee Peter Carne, pending a show cause notice, as a consequence of serious allegations which could amount to misbehaviour under Section 9 of the Public Trustee Act 1978," her spokesman wrote in a statement.

Media Statement re Queensland Public Guardian misconduct allegations

The Governor in Council has today approved a recommendation by Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath to immediately suspend the Public Trustee Peter Carne, pending a show cause notice, as a consequence of serious allegations which could amount to misbehaviour under Section 9 of the Public Trustee Act 1978.

The public can be assured that the Office of the Public Trustee’s core obligations will continue to be met.  The Governor in Council today has approved Samay Zhouand as Acting Public Trustee, to take effect immediately.