UNION bosses and workers at embattled car parts maker CMI, which has a plant in Ballarat, want federal Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten to intervene in their entitlements bid.
Hundreds of employees from the company's four Victorian sites attended a creditors' meeting at the Windsor Hotel in Melbourne yesterday but left uncertain of their immediate fate.
The company employs 60 workers full-time in Ballarat and provides work for about 40 contract employees at the disability organisation McCallum Industries.
AMWU assistant state secretary Leigh Diehm says the union believes the company is unlikely to be sold as a going concern and has called on Mr Shorten to act.
"This company is, as we understand it, in some serious difficulty and we want to hear what the administrators have got to say today about where our members' entitlements are and what is the likely prospect of this company being sold as a going concern," he said.
Mr Diehm said the union sought an urgent meeting with Mr Shorten in a bid to advance payments to workers under the government's GEERS program.
Under the scheme, workers made redundant can claim unpaid entitlements if and when the company is placed in liquidation.
"The reality is, under the current legislation, GEERS payments can't be paid until a company goes into liquidation," Mr Diehm said.
"Unfortunately with this company it's likely to be at least another five weeks until it goes into liquidation and then, after that, up to six months before our members receive any payments."
Mr Diehm said 42 workers out of about 250 across the four sites had been dismissed without entitlements. Some were owed significant amounts of unpaid superannuation, including what they had themselves paid.