NCPA RESPONSE to ASIC Review of Fair Go Finance (Fair Go)

Feb 10 2016

NCPA RESPONSE to ASIC Review of Fair Go Finance (Fair Go) 

Following ASIC’s media announcement about NCPA’s member Fair Go Finance, the Association is taking the opportunity to formally reply and show its support for their member.   

Phil Johns, CEO of NCPA, comments:   

“The product under review from ASIC, the Fair Go Flexi-Loan, saved customer’s money in the majority of cases. Fair Go Finance, like all of NCPA’s members, is a responsible lender and ASIC’s investigation in this case found no issue with our member’s responsible lending processes”.   
“What is important to remember is that Fair Go Finance, like all of our members, consulted legal counsel and followed their advice to ensure that beyond possible doubt, their products met National Credit Contract Laws, was safe for consumers and met ASIC’s standards”.  
“What we have here is a differing of legal opinion on the interpretation of the NCCP Act between lawyers.  Even though Fair Go still believes the legal advice they received is correct and that the product is legal, they took the commercial decision to simply comply with ASIC’s wishes. This saw them stop providing the product immediately, pay the fines, refund some customers (even though the majority of consumers were financially better off) and move on with business, rather than fight it out in the courts, which is not commercially viable”.  
“Furthermore, what the NCPA finds frustrating is the continued use of the term ‘payday loan’ to describe the product it was investigating when it was not a payday loan. First and foremost, the concept of payday lending, where credit is required to be paid back on a borrower’s next payday, was made illegal in March 2013”.   
“For ASIC as a financial services regulator, operating amongst knowledgeable professionals, who know the correct terminology, we find it not only frustrating, but misleading”.  
“We are under no illusion that we’re the perfect industry, but we still deserve equal treatment when we’re trying to do the right thing for consumers and the industry,” concluded Mr. Johns.

Download the full pdf of the media release below.