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The Australian Government may provide discretionary assistance in some cases by act of grace payments, or by waiving debts owed to the Australian Government. In general, this assistance may be granted where it is considered that the Australian Government has a moral responsibility to provide assistance, rather than a legal responsibility.
For further information on the mechanisms and how to apply, visit these links:
The CDDA Scheme is the avenue for providing assistance where a person has been adversely affected by defective actions or inaction of an Australian Government agency. Responsibility for CDDA claims rests with the Minister responsible for the relevant agency, and with officers authorised by the Minister. Such claims should not be referred to the Finance portfolio.
June 2010 - Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee