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MP Damien O’Connor Puts Bankers On Notice

Press Release
Bank Customer Action Collective

The Farm Debt mediation Bill was shot down in Parliament last week. Irrespective of this, 'congratulations' must go to Damien O'Connor MP for putting bankers "On Notice" to honor their own code of practice or be regulated.

Unfortunately mediation is not adequately provided for within the bankers code, nor are basic customer rights as would be reasonably expected elsewhere in industry.

The say: 'if you don't like it change banks', but when you have loans or mortgages this can be very costly with, establishment fees, valuations, renewal of mortgage insurances to the new bank and in most cases you even have to pay a penalty fee to your old bank for early repayment of your existing loan arrangements.

The problem is the bankers voluntary code of practice guarantees the customer little or no protection when a bank makes errors of accounting within your account and or overcharges you or wrongly charges you. A study of the top British banks found that the bankers there have been overcharging their customers $16.3 billion ( NZ) per year.

Warnings have been given to our Government that a simular trend exists here too and that the bankers frequently refuse to 'put it right' when caught, in fact they often take the hard line against you for noticing it and/or requesting a correction and/or requesting a refund.

Government protects consumers of other products and services by acts of parliament but the existing systems are failing bank customers badly.

The Banking Ombudsman works within extremely narrow (banker friendly) terms of reference that excludes most customers that have been unfairly treated by the actions of their bank particularly breaches to agreements, overcbarging of fees and interest on loans.

Bankers do "Reap unresonables profits from the good hard-working people of this country" therefore the Government must honor it's comitment and lay down fairer rules and enforce compliance of them of effectively protect us. Individual banker's are abusing the power they have over us, leaving us the customer nowhere to go for help.

When your banker takes action against you, even when the bank is wrong, the courts are of little comfort and certainly don't provide justice to the hardworking and honest people of New Zealand.

Further information and/or interview available by contacting Gray Eatwell 025/329-491.


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