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Issue 27 - October 2016

Chief Ombudsman's Message

Welcome to the spring edition of The FOS Circular for 2016. Early in October we made a submission to the independent panel reviewing external dispute resolution (EDR). Our key recommendations build on the strengths of the current Ombudsman model based on the principles of fairn...READ MORE


The FOS Approach

The FOS Approach to Early release of superannuation

Early superannuation release to repay arrears should be considered only as a last resort. Even though the borrower may have requested a release, there will generally be other ways of better assisting them. Financial services providers (FSPs) should ensure that they fully explor...READ MORE

A man wearing a beanie in a wheelchair.

FOS Forum

Key determination

SMSF should not have been established. Directors of a corporate trustee of a self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) lodged a dispute with FOS against a financial services provider (FSP) alleging inappropriate advice. There were two issues to this dispute: the appropriateness o...READ MORE

Bird's nest with folded 100 dollar note inside.

FOS News

Upcoming events

We organise and attend hundreds of events every year. Recently we have been to the Financial and Consumer Rights Council Conference, the 26th Annual Credit Law Conference, the Nepean Disability Expo, and hosted a General Insurance Open Forum and Life Insurance Operation Forum i...READ MORE

Upcoming events
SMSF advice: Our top 10 tips

Taking into account the client’s individual circumstances is the main consideration when providing advice on the suitability of a self-managed superannuation fund, according to the FOS Lead Ombudsman Investments and Advice, June Smith. She outlined the FOS top 10 tips for finan...READ MORE

Spotlight on: June Smith
FOS National Conference round-up

More than 470 people attended the FOS National Conference at the Melbourne Convention Centre in early September. Attendees included FOS members, professional associations, regulators and consumer advocates, as well as FOS staff, ombudsmen, board members and panel members. For t...READ MORE

Panel members at the 2016 FOS National Conference.
An update from the Code Compliance and Monitoring Team

The Code team is a separately operated and funded business unit of the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) Australia. We support independent committees to monitor compliance with codes of practice in the Australian financial services industry to achieve service standards people c...READ MORE

Members of the Code Compliance and Monitoring Team at a meeting.
Under the spotlight: Helen Moye and Geoff Bant

The FOS Board has appointed Helen Moye and Geoff Bant as FOS Ombudsmen. Helen will initially focus on General Insurance disputes and Geoff will focus on Banking and Finance disputes, including small business disputes. Helen and Geoff took up their appointments on 10 October. ...READ MORE

Helen Moye and Geoff Bant
Unpaid determinations update

Unpaid Determinations Non-compliance with FOS determinations due to the lack of financial resources of the relevant member firms continues to increase, with more than $13 million not returned to affected consumers in the past six years. It is important to note that this is not ...READ MORE

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Systemic Issues

Systemic issues update

This article summarises some notable systemic issues that were newly identified during the July to September quarter of 2016. These de-identified matters were reported to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) in accordance with our processes. Also provided...READ MORE

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Case Studies

Case studies

FSP inappropriately consents to superannuation release. An applicant had been experiencing difficulty meeting repayments on his home loans. He initially obtained two superannuation releases, with the support of the FSP. At this stage, it was not clear that the applicant’s diffi...READ MORE

Hammer raised over piggy bank


Statistics report

Disputes received at the Registration and Referral stage. We received 9,781 disputes in the July to September quarter. This is a 4% increase compared with the previous quarter and a 16% increase compared with the same quarter last year. The increase was across all product lines...READ MORE

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