Submission: Proposed amendments to the Consumer Credit and Corporations Legislation Amendment (Enhancements) Bill 2011

In brief, this submission recommends:

  • With regards to hardship variations
    • that Government consider providing detailed guidance to credit providers, perhaps through ASIC, to assist them to better assess and respond to requests for hardship variations.
    • that any notice provided under subsection 72(4) should inform a consumer about their rights to renegotiate the proposal if it is not suitable, and their right to seek to have the variation reconsidered through external dispute resolution processes.
    • that the note currently under subsection 72(3) be amended to be clear that credit providers must assess requests for hardship variations based on the information available to them, regardless of whether a debtor has provided information requested;
  • that guidance be provided in regards to credit providers’ obligations under section 128;
  • that section 160E, which permits credit providers to seek repayment of loans using employer payment authorities, be removed from the bill;
  • with regards to reverse mortgages, that amendments to paragraph 18A(3)(d) be removed so that credit providers may not begin enforcement proceedings because a borrower has failed to pay a cost unrelated to the reverse mortgage;
  • the definition of Small Amount Credit Contract be amended to include only loans of below 12 months in length;
  • With regards to caps on costs in Schedule 4:
    • that the amendments to subsections 32A(2) and (3) be reversed and the original cap of 10 per cent establishment fee and 2 per cent monthly fee be reinstated;
    • that the wording of Subsection 31A(4) be clarified to ensure the Ministerial review can consider provisions outside of section 31A;
    • that text deleted from subsections 32B(3) and 39B(1) (which has the effect of moving important consumer protections from the Act to the regulations) be reversed.

To read our joint submission, please click here: Proposed amendments to the Consumer Credit and Corporations Legislation Amendment (Enhancements) Bill 2011.

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