We will at all times and in all instances whilst we engage in the provision of credit services, observe the principles and accept the obligations of responsible lending. The primary objective of this policy is to ensure that the credit services provided to you are “not unsuitable” to your requirements and objectives and that you are able to meet the repayments.
Our responsible lending manager will, and in complying with requirements in acting fairly and honestly under the Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009:
- Receive your application and check that it is complete;
- Check and verify your employment and earnings details;
- Check and verify your residential status street address, length of occupancy, rental or purchasing; marital status; partner's income; disposable income after fixed commitments of all types;
- Make a decision on the merits of your application and the viability of the loan from our business perspective; and
- Advise you in writing of the decision to grant the credit contract.
Where a loan is considered unsuitable for you, this will be as a result of the investigation conducted by our responsible manager revealing that the credit service that is being sought does not meet your requirements or objectives, or that you would be unable to make the repayments at all or without placing yourself into substantial hardship. The application will then be denied.
We will ensure that all successful applicants are aware of the existence of the Internal Disputes Resolution (IDR) and External Dispute Resolution (EDR) processes that are operated by us.
A regular monitor will be undertaken of the performance of the repayments associated with the credit contract and arrears, or consistently late payment patterns, will be discussed with you when and if it is deemed appropriate to do so.
YOUR RIGHTS AND YOUR CREDIT ASSESSMENT
We are only required by law to provide you with a copy of your credit assessment if you are successful in having the credit contract approved by us. A copy of your assessment is only required to be retained by us for a period of seven (7) years from the day the credit contract is entered into. You will not be charged for a copy of your credit assessment.
You will be provided with a copy of your credit assessment before entering into the contract if your request is made before this time; within seven (7) business days if your request is made within two (2) years of the contract being entered into; within twenty-one (21) business days for any request made more than two (2) years after the contract is entered into.
RESOLVING DISPUTES – INTERNAL DISPUTES RESOLUTION PROCEDURES
1. Guiding Principles
The parties to any dispute, and where applicable their representatives, must genuinely attempt to resolve the dispute through the processes set out below and should ensure that final resolution to the dispute is achieved and recorded in writing as quickly as possible but certainly within forty-five (45) days from the date of lodgment of the dispute.
The establishment of an Internal Disputes Resolution (IDR) delivers a number of benefits to the business; amongst these are the following:
- the opportunity to resolve complaints or disputes quickly and directly;
- the ability to identify and address recurring or systemic problems (which can then lead to product or service improvements);
- the capacity to provide solutions to problems rather than have remedies imposed by an external body; and
- the chance to improve levels of customer confidence and satisfaction.
Wherever possible, we should resolve disputes as quickly as possible using the IDR directly with you, as this:
- prevents complaints or disputes from becoming entrenched;
- preserves customer relationships;
- is often the most efficient and cost-effective way for an organisation to deal with complaints or disputes; and
- may improve customer satisfaction.
The existence of our IDR and External Dispute Resolution (EDR) processes will displayed on all brochures and advertising material concerning the provision of Credit Services.
2. Definition of Dispute
A dispute shall be characterised as “An expression of dissatisfaction, made to an organisation relating to its products or services, or the complaints handling process itself, where a response or resolution is explicitly or implicitly expected.”
3. Advice of Dispute Resolution Process
For the purposes of compliance with this procedure, we must provide to you information in plain English setting out detail of the existence of our IDR process and, where the dispute has the potential to escalate, then the process of referring the dispute to the EDR Service Provider, being the Financial Ombudsman Service Limited.
4. Lodgment and Receipt of Notification of a Dispute
All disputes are to be lodged with our front office staff and may be in any of the following forms:
- in writing;
- via email;
- in person; and/or
- by telephone.
and you shall be given a document in plain English as set out in clause 3 of this procedure in person, by post or return email.
5. Detail to be Included in the Internal Dispute Resolution (IDR) Process
5.1 All contents of the IDR must take into account the size and scale of our business; the range and types of financial products on offer; the nature and demographic of the Client Base; and the potential for disputation as a direct result of our operation of the business.
To demonstrate the our commitment to the IDR process we must ensure that all staff, and where applicable representatives, are fully aware of the IDR process and are provided a copy of this document and that all disputes notified by Clients are addressed using the IDR as the method.
All staff including the Directors will undertake adequate training to ensure that the IDR is understood and we will allocate sufficient resources, financial and human, to ensure that the IDR is recognised as the only mechanism used to deal with disputes.
Management and reporting systems will be implemented by us to ensure timely and effective complaints and dispute handling and monitoring.
To ensure adequate resourcing of the IDR process, the Directors appoint Scott Perry to be the Responsible Executive Officer. We will ensure that systems are in place to hold information relevant to any and all disputes that are notified.
Sufficient financial resources are allocated to deal with the costs of the IDR process including any settlement that may result as a settlement of a dispute.
5.4 Collection of Information
We will ensure that a system is developed to handle the secure storage of all information collected related to any and all disputes. The system will specify the steps for identifying, gathering, maintaining, storing and disposing of records associated with a dispute separately and distinctly. All files will be backed up and stored safely in case of the need to produce the file to ASIC or any other legally entitled entity.
5.5 Analysis and Evaluation of Disputes
Any and all disputes will be classified and analysed to identify systemic recurring and single incident problems and trends, and we will use this information to assist in eliminating underlying causation of disputes. This work will assist in identifying by category the types of disputes, the type of disputant, subject and outcome of a dispute and the timeliness of our response.
(i) Immediately a dispute is lodged with us, an acknowledgement will be generated and given to you along with the information concerning the IDR and EDR processes.
(ii) Notification of the dispute will be passed on to our Responsible Executive Officer.
(iii) All relevant information will be gathered and collated by us and an initial meeting with you arranged with a view to resolving the dispute within five (5) business days.
(iv) In the event that the dispute is not resolved within five (5) business days, then the process of reaching resolution will continue with a view to reaching final resolution within twenty-one (21) days.
(v) Should there be no satisfactory outcome to the dispute, work will continue to reach an agreed final resolution within forty-five (45) days. Unless there are exceptional circumstances, we will complete the investigation of your complaint within forty-five (45) days of receiving it. Where an investigation may continue beyond forty-five (45) days, we will:
(a) inform you in writing of the reasons for the delay and your right to have the matter reviewed by the Financial Ombudsman Service;
(b) provide you with monthly updates on the progress of the investigation; and
(c) inform you of a date when a decision can be reasonably expected.
(vi) When we have completed our investigation of your complaint, we shall inform you in writing of the outcome and the reasons for our decision, and unless the complaint has been completely resolved, what further complaint resolution options are available to you.
(vii) If you are still not satisfied with the completion of our investigation, you may wish to contact the EDR service provider – the Financial Ombudsman Service.
Their contact details are:
Postal address: Financial Ombudsman Service Limited, GPO Box 3, Melbourne VIC 3001
Phone: 1300 78 08 08