Sector Articles of Interest - 11 November
Written on the 11 November 2020 by SAFCA
Monday 2 - Friday 6 November
Welcome to the fourth edition of our Weekly Digest. This issue covers Monday 2 - Friday 6 November 2020.
This email is to keep you across any recent changes to the Toolkit, COVID-19 Toolkit and the National Debt Helpline website.
We have decided we should offer an alternative to the Facebook group, as not everyone is engaged via that platform. The Facebook group will remain active and this newsletter reflects the posts we make each week.
Looking for a different Weekly Digest? You can find all our previous versions on the Weekly Digest Toolkit page.
Changes to Toolkit and Website Resources
Financial Counselling Australia Toolkit
The National Hardship Register (NHR) Factsheet and the Information for Clients brochure have been updated.
There is more information about this below.
Information about Superannuation updated to reflect recent changes. - https://www.covid19fc.org.au/super
News and Updates
Posted on Facebook Toolkit Group throughout the week.
Please Take Our Survey for the Responsible Lending Campaign
The Government is proposing to repeal responsible lending laws by March 2021.
We're conducting a survey to understand the views of financial counsellors about this proposal.
We'll use this information in our campaign arguing that these changes should not go ahead.
The campaign is being coordinated by FCA in collaboration with the State and Territory financial counselling associations.
The deadline to complete the survey is next Friday, 13 November. It is available on Survey Monkey - https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NSYJ7KH
Your contribution is greatly appreciated! If you have any questions, please contact James Sleep - firstname.lastname@example.org
Changes to the National Hardship Register
There have been some changes to the debt collectors participating in the National Hardship Register.
Credit Four and Nexxa Portfolio Management stopped participating in August 2020, and Inter Credit have joined.
The NHR Factsheet and the Information for Clients brochure have both been updated and are available on the Toolkit, as well as the members area of the National Hardship Register website.
Credit Four and Nexxa have not yet been removed from the list in the Online Portal application process, but mentions of them as Participating Creditors have been removed from the NHR website and other documentation.
Responses from MPs and Senators
Recently we've been asking those of you who are involved in the Responsible Lending campaign to contact your local MPs and Senators.
Have you had any responses from politicians that you've reached out to? Or do you have any feedback about this process?
We'd love to hear about your experiences! Please email Maura Angle at email@example.com . Thank you
Freeze on Forced Sales: Commonwealth Bank Guide for Financial Counsellors
The Commonwealth Bank has announced they will be putting in place a freeze on forced sales for COVID home loan deferral customers who are unable to return to full repayments.
In others words, for customers who are not able to resume home loan repayments because of the pandemic, but who had been up to date before the pandemic, they will not force the sale of the property until September 2021.
That's a good outcome for this group of people and will give them some breathing space.
Commbank have prepared the attached guide, to support financial counsellors as you have discussions with eligible customers. Please see the guide for further information - Click here
ABA Supports Financial Counselling in Media Release
A recent media release by the Australian Banking Association (ABA) made significant statements about financial counselling and possible funding:
"Access to financial counsellors is also a key element of community resilience and recovery and deserves focus under the remit of Recommendation 22.5.
"The ABA supports the development of an enduring funding model made up of a fixed level of Government funding and levies on the financial sector and non-financial sector participants that reflect the drivers of financial hardship.
"This will ensure a sustainable funding base so people suffering terrible hardship can access critical advice and support when they need it."
Read the full media release for more info. - https://mailchi.mp/ausbanking/bushfire-royal-commission-to-improve-disaster-coordination?e=5df3560c5b&fbclid=IwAR2oZhYfC88urQVD2uvs9gpJBTpHwbSk6P9dSpYuGN5Zru0Zwb7EhubKDEk
The Wave of Debt That Could Soon Engulf Many Australians
Opposition is growing to the Federal Government's plan to axe responsible lending laws. This investigative article by CHOICE is an important read. - https://www.choice.com.au/money/banking/everyday-banking/articles/responsible-lending-laws-if-axed-will-engulf-australians-in-debt-they-cant-afford?fbclid=IwAR0QFHJ22uMniOLVfHydSuahBZ0l1AYjxSS3-LyANPWC_Uw2ThhvLOjqjjI
Having trouble reading the FCA articles? Go to the Toolkit and you will find all copies of the Weekly Digest.