The Labor Commissioner, after investigation and upon determination that wages or monetary benefits are due and unpaid to any worker in the State of California, may collect such wages or benefits on behalf of the worker without assignment of such wages or benefits to the commissioner.
(a) The Labor Commissioner shall act as trustee of all such collected unpaid wages or benefits, and shall deposit such collected moneys in the Industrial Relations Unpaid Wage Fund.
(b) The Labor Commissioner shall make a diligent search to locate any worker for whom the Labor Commissioner has collected unpaid wages or benefits.
(c) All wages or benefits collected under this section shall be remitted to the worker, his lawful representative, or to any trust or custodial fund established under a plan to provide health and welfare, pension, vacation, retirement, or similar benefits from the Industrial Relations Unpaid Wage Fund.
(d) Any unpaid wages or benefits collected by the Labor Commissioner pursuant to this section shall be retained in the Industrial Relations Unpaid Wage Fund until remitted pursuant to subdivision (c), or until deposited in the General Fund.
(e) The Controller shall, at the end of each fiscal year, transfer to the General Fund the unencumbered balance, less six months of expenditures as determined by the Director of Finance, in the Industrial Relations Unpaid Wage Fund.
(f) All wages or benefits collected under this section which cannot be remitted from the Industrial Relations Unpaid Wage Fund pursuant to subdivision (c) because money has been transmitted to the General Fund shall be paid out of the General Fund from funds appropriated for that purpose.