ASIC slams GE Money
Thursday, May 22, 2008/
The corporate watchdog, ASIC, has taken action over the sales and debt collection practices of companies in the GE Money group after complaints from consumers about harassment.
The action relates to advice provided by parts of its insurance advice and sales business and also the debt collection practices of the GE Money consumer credit businesses.
ASIC has imposed conditions on the Australian financial services license of GE Money’s Hallmark General Insurance Company and Hallmark Life Insurance Company after those companies failed to comply with commitments they made to ASIC.
ASIC found that parts of the insurance and sales business were often poorly managed and not meeting the legal obligation requiring there be a “reasonable basis” for personal advice given to clients.
ASIC says it was specifically concerned that staff were selling insurance to customers whose needs had not been identified or understood.
GE Money has also entered into an enforceable undertaking to address ASIC’s concerns about the debt collection practices of its consumer credit business.
“This is in response to consumer complaints about harassment from the debt collection practices of the business. Those practices included excessive or inappropriate contact with customers, contact at unreasonable hours and an inflexible approach to repayment arrangements,” ASIC said.