How does AFCA help Australians with a financial complaint?
AFCA is a free and independent financial ombudsman for individuals and small businesses who have a complaint about a financial product or service.
Anyone can contact AFCA about:
- credit products (eg credit cards, store/gift card and interest-free deals);
- short term loans (eg payday loans);
- personal/home/investment and business loans;
- banking deposits and payments;
- insurance policies; and
- superannuation products and funds.
What types of financial difficulty complaints can AFCA help with?
If you’re unable to make repayments to your credit obligations (eg credit card, payday/home /personal loan), contact your credit company first and ask for assistance. If this is declined or it hasn’t responded to your request – AFCA can help.
AFCA can also help if you’ve received a default notice when you’re experiencing financial difficulty, or the company continues action against you to recover a debt after you’ve made a financial difficulty request.
How does someone make a complaint with AFCA?
It’s important that you provide documents that will help support your complaint (eg bills, contracts, notes from phone calls) and advise if there are circumstances that might be relevant to your complaint for example, illness, bereavement, domestic violence or a physical or mental health condition.
If you’re experiencing financial difficulty, you must complete AFCA’s online form that gives a Statement of your Financial Position.
How many people who call AFCA have seen or have a financial counsellor working on their behalf, does it help and what are the benefits?
In the last financial year, there were 479 complaints lodged with AFCA by financial counsellors on behalf of a client. Financial counsellors also referred another 1,400 people directly to our service.
A financial counsellor can provide holistic advice and advocacy that is based on someone’s whole financial situation (not just their financial product or service complaint).
A Bravery Trust financial counsellor can also act on your behalf when contacting AFCA.
What are some of the common outcomes?
A common remedy is to vary a credit contract in either the short or long-term depending on the circumstances, for example:
- Extending the period of the contract and reducing the amount of each repayment due under the contract
- Postponing repayments under the contract
- Changing payment arrangements
- Reducing the loan interest rate.
1800 931 678