Youpla Group (formerly Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund)
All of the previously active Youpla Group funeral funds are now in liquidation.
ASIC appreciates that the liquidation of Youpla Group entities is causing distress for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities affected.
Help paying for funerals following Youpla Group collapse families
Applications opened for the Federal Government’s Youpla Group Funeral Benefits Program on 7 September 2022. Applications will be accepted until 30 November 2023.
The Program will pay a grant in place of a funeral benefit that would otherwise have been paid by the Youpla Group before its collapse.
Payments will be made to eligible beneficiaries of Youpla Group policy holders who had an active policy on or after 1 April 2020.
Applications can be made from 7 September 2022 via Treasury’s dedicated hotline 1800 296 989, by emailing email@example.com and on the Treasury website.
Which funds are in liquidation?
Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund No 2 Pty Ltd (ACBF 2) entered liquidation on 2 March 2022.
The Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund Pty Limited (ACBF 1), Aboriginal Community Funeral Plans Pty Ltd (ACBF Plan) and Community Funeral Plans Pty Ltd (ACBF Community) entered liquidation on 11 March 2022.
ASIC previously wrote to the directors of Youpla Group to ask them to take immediate and public action to address concerns about the financial viability of these funds (see 22-046MR).
Members of all Youpla Group funds are no longer covered under their funeral policies and should consider if they want to make other arrangements.
This page has information and links to organisations that may be able to assist consumers who are impacted.
The Youpla Group comprises four active funeral contribution funds:
- The Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund (Fund No. 1) – issued by The Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund Pty Limited (entered liquidation on 11 March 2022) (ACBF 1)
- Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund No 2 (Fund No. 2) – issued by Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund No 2 Pty Ltd (entered liquidation on 2 March 2022) (ACBF 2)
- Aboriginal Community Funeral Plan (Fund No. 3 ) – issued by ACBF Funeral Plans Pty Ltd (entered liquidation on 11 March 2022) (ACBF Plan)
- Community Funeral Plans (Fund No. 4) – issued by Community Funeral Plans Pty Ltd. (entered liquidation on 11 March 2022) (ACBF Community).
ASIC and NSW Fair Trading are dual regulators of the Youpla Group (including the winding up of the funeral contribution funds) and are committed to working together with the liquidator of the funds to ensure the best possible outcome for affected consumers.
What should members do?
Youpla Group members are no longer covered by their funeral policies and should consider other arrangements.
Payments to Youpla Group, including direct debits from members' bank accounts, should have ceased.
Mob Strong Debt Help has published information for Youpla Group customers.
Members may wish to contact a financial counsellor to discuss their options, try Mob Strong Debt Help on 1800 808 488.
ASIC is aware that Mob Strong may be receiving many calls at the moment. If your call is not answered immediately please be patient and wait for a call back.
Consumers considering other options for funeral payment arrangements can get more information about paying for funerals from the Moneysmart website or by speaking to a financial counsellor.
ASIC cannot provide advice to individual consumers.
How can consumers find out which fund they are a member of?
Consumers can check any documents they have, including recent documentation received, to check which fund they are a member of. Consumers who are still unsure, can contact the liquidator using the details below, who can advise which fund they are a member of from client lists.
Liquidator contact details
The liquidator for all Youpla Group entities is now David Stimpson of SV Partners.
Phone: 07 3310 2005
SV Partners has created a portal with further information regarding the liquidation of the Youpla Group entities: Youpla Group / ACBF Group Portal | SV Partners
For more general information about the liquidation process, please see the following ASIC information sheets:
- Liquidation: A guide for creditors | ASIC - Australian Securities and Investments Commission
- Dealing with insolvent companies | ASIC - Australian Securities and Investments Commission
The above information sheets do not specifically deal with the liquidation of registered funeral contribution funds.
Making a complaint about Youpla Group
Members can make a complaint to the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) online or by calling 1800 931 678. AFCA continues to accept complaints against ACBF/Youpla entities but has paused the handling of those complaints. Find out more on the AFCA website.
Contacting a Regulator
If you wish to contact a regulator in relation to any of the funds, we recommend that you contact both ASIC and NSW Fair Trading.
ASIC and NSW Fair Trading will work together to ensure that all correspondence and inquiries are addressed promptly by the regulator that is best placed to address the issues raised.
You can contact NSW Fair Trading by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone on 1800 502 042.
You can contact ASIC's Indigenous Outreach Program by email at email@example.com or by phone on 1300 365 957.
ASIC court action
ASIC commenced proceedings in the Federal Court against ACBF Funeral Plans Pty Ltd and Youpla Group Pty Ltd for alleged contraventions of the ASIC Act in October 2020. See 20-262MR.
ASIC was granted leave to continue its proceeding against the defendants in liquidation by orders made by Justice Jagot on 15 July 2022. This is on the condition that ASIC not seek to enforce any pecuniary penalties or costs orders made in its favour without further leave of the Court.
The matter has been listed for a hearing on liability and penalty from 22 to 23 November 2022 at the Federal Court in Sydney.
On 22 November 2022, the hearing on liability and penalty was heard. Judgment has been reserved.
Application to appoint special purpose liquidators
In October 2022, ASIC and NSW Fair Trading jointly applied to the Supreme Court for orders appointing special purpose liquidators to investigate recovery actions that might be available to the Youpla Group (formerly Aboriginal Community Benefit Fund) entities that are currently in liquidation.
The application did not seek the removal of Mr Stimpson as liquidator of the Youpla Group entities. As such, it was proposed that SV Partners would continue to deal with the liquidation matters, other than the investigation, such as the distribution of surplus assets to creditors including Youpla Group customers.
In December 2022, the Court granted the orders sought.
Youpla Group customers do not need to take any action and they should continue to contact SV Partners if they have enquiries about the liquidation of the Youpla Group entities.
See the joint media release (22-297MR) for more information.
ASIC seeks to preserve property of former Youpla Group director
In December 2022, ASIC commenced proceedings in the Federal Court as part of its ongoing investigation into the collapse of the Youpla Group entities.
The injunctive proceedings seek to preserve a property part owned by a former director, Mr Bryn Jones. The purpose of ASIC’s action is to protect the interests of aggrieved persons, namely the Youpla Group entities, and preserve the asset for their benefit.
Orders were made on 20 December 2022 by way of consent. The matter is to be listed for a further hearing no later than 31 May 2023.
See the media release (22-372MR) for more information.