Inquiry Into Small Business Lending Practices

Sep 06 2016

Inquiry Into Small Business Lending Practices

In a Joint media release with Michael McCormack Minister for Small Business, The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman has been directed to inquire as to the adequacy of legislation to address concerns raised in the report "Impairment of Customer Loans"  by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services.

The Ombudsman is to  examine "selected cases identified by the Parliamentary Joint Committee and, pursuant to the attached terms of reference, provide advice to Government to help determine if further regulatory action is required."

According to Minister McCormack, the report "raised serious concerns about how banks treated some of their small business lending customers and made a number of recommendations to address the deficiencies they identified”.

In the media release, Minister for Revenue and Financial Services Kelly O’Dwyer said, "the Government has a substantial financial system agenda to improve consumer outcomes, however the Ombudsman will be able to identify through a forensic analysis if further reforms are needed".

According to Minister O'Dwyer, reforms may include, "extending the unfair contract terms protections to small businesses, and improving the regulation of insolvency practitioners” .

The final report produced by the inquiry is due to be reported to the Government in 12 weeks.

CLICK HERE to read the full Media Release.