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National Consumer Credit Reform License Requirements

Saturday, August 01, 2009 - Posted by Philip Harvey

ASIC recently launched a Consultation Paper on Training and Competence for credit licensees. 

The Key points from the ASIC paper are;
"The new credit regime proposed by the National Credit Bill is aimed at boosting consumer protection and raising standards in the credit industry. It requires credit licensees to maintain their competence and ensure their representatives are adequately trained to engage in credit activities. In granting Australian credit licences, ASIC must have regard to whether particular people are 'fit and proper'. We will look to these people to demonstrate whether the credit licensee is competent as a whole. While credit licensees must determine for themselves how best to meet their obligations, we are proposing to set out our expectations as to:    
  • Credit licensee competence;
  • Training requirements for representatives; and
  • Transitional arrangements
To reinforce the training and competence requirements, we propose to impose some standard licence conditions." Impact to Collectors Under Clause  47(1)(g) of the National Credit Bill the credit licensee must ensure all represtatives are adequately trained, and competent to engage in credit activities authorised by their license. The Key Points that ASIC have drawn with regards to this are are;

"Under the National Credit Bill, credit licensees must ensure that their representatives are adequately trained, and are competent, to engage in the credit activities authorised by the licence. Generally, we think that credit licensees should determine for themselves what is appropriate initially and ongoing training for their representatives. However, we propose that representatives working as mortgage brokers should hold at least a Certificate IV in Financial Services (Finance / Mortgage Broking) and should undertake 20 hours of continuing professional development a year. "

ASIC is deliberately not prescribing prerequisite qualifications or ongoing training requirements for representatives at this time.

But what does this mean for Collectors? Your licensees need to ensure you are trained & competent to engage in credit activities which includes collections. Your licensees need to determine what the basic competency & ongoing training requirements are. Additionaly training programs will need to be documented.

The full ASIC release can be viewed here.

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