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Opinion

Banks are NOT allowed to collect on a debt that has prescribed - Ombudsman

11 May 2022 10:07 PM
Tags:
The Money Show
Bruce Whitfield
National Credit Act
Ombudsman for Banking Services
Wendy Knowler
debt collection
Experian
Prescribed debt
consumer issues
prescription
Prescription Act

Wendy Knowler shares another hair-raising case study, this one highlighted in the Ombudsman for Banking Services' report.

A recent discussion on The Money Show about the prescription of debt prompted "a tidal wave" of emails into Wendy Knowler's inbox.

The consumer journalist shares another hair-raising case study, this one highlighted by the Ombudsman for Banking Services (OBS) in its 2021 annual report released on Wednesday.

(Read more about the prescription of debt here)

© digitalskill/123rf.com

The Ombudsman made it clear that banks are not allowed to collect on a debt that has prescribed.

The complainant in this case had taken out a personal loan with an unnamed bank in November 2011 relates Knowler, and must have defaulted on his payments along the way.

RELATED: Collection of prescribed debts: Know your rights

He was convinced that the debt had prescribed by 30 August 2020 when he saw it listed on his credit record with credit bureau Experian and lodged a dispute.

The bank contended that the complainant was not disputing the debt but was raising prescription, which can be regarded as an Acknowledgement of Debt, therefore prescription was interrupted.

Wendy Knowler, Consumer journalist

"We had to draw the bank’s attention to the provisions of the National Credit Act (NCA)" reports the Ombudsman.

The outcome was that the bank in question had to accept the OBS position and close the file.

Listen to Knowler explain the details of the case and what to do if you're asked to pay what you think is a prescribed debt:




11 May 2022 10:07 PM
Tags:
The Money Show
Bruce Whitfield
National Credit Act
Ombudsman for Banking Services
Wendy Knowler
debt collection
Experian
Prescribed debt
consumer issues
prescription
Prescription Act

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