We understand that life can take unexpected turns and leave you in a vulnerable financial position. If you’ve experienced an event that is making your loan repayments difficult to make, we may be able to help you temporarily so you can get your loan repayments back on track and offer assistance when you need it most.
Common events contributing to financial difficulty may include:
Financial hardship is more common than you might think, so if you’re finding things tough, please reach out to us as soon as possible.
If you speak with us about your temporary hardship situation, we can try to work with you to reach a payment arrangement that is individual to your needs. Section 72 of the National Credit Code gives consumers a right to request a variation to their regulated credit contract on the grounds of financial hardship.
We may agree to adjust your repayment amount or term, or provide another solution that could give you the flexibility you need to get through your situation. You will still need to repay your loan, and delaying payment may increase the overall interest over the life of your loan.
We may also be able to assist you with strategies to alleviate your financial pressure over the exam period, which would ordinarily not constitute hardship.
There are two ways you can speak with us if you are experiencing financial hardship: to get financial hardship assistance:
Level 5, 570 St Kilda Road
We ask that you prepare and provide us with all of your supporting information to help us review your request quickly. This includes information about your situation and your finances. You are not obliged to give us this information, but without the information, we may have difficulty approving your request.
Most of the time, we may be able to process your application over the phone, or occasionally we may ask you to provide supporting documentation or more information.
By law, we are required to reply to your hardship request in writing within 21 days of us receiving your application. Our response may be:
If we request further information from you, you usually have up to 28 days to provide the requested information. If you do not, we may decide to decline your hardship request after the 28 days.
While we try to work with all borrowers who are experiencing genuine financial hardship, we are not legally required to approve all requests. We may decline a hardship request for a number reasons, such as where an applicant is unable to supply adequate information about their hardship situation, we feel that the application is not genuine, we don’t think that the situation is temporary, or we feel that varying a credit contract will not help the applicant or will just prolong the inevitable.
Throughout the assessment period or arrangement variation period, If this is the case, please allow up to 21 days for us to process your request.
While you’re on a payment plan, interest and fees (excluding late payment fees) will usually continue to apply.
If you can’t make a payment that we’ve agreed to, or you need to change your arrangement, it’s important that you call us on 1800 566 699
and let us know.
If you’re not satisfied with our decision about a hardship request, you may lodge a complaint through our internal dispute resolution (IDR) process. Please contact us for details about our IDR process, or to lodge a complaint.
Alternatively, you may complain to our ASIC approved external dispute resolution (EDR) scheme. We are a member of the Credit and Investments Ombudsman, who can be contacted on 1800 138 422 or at http://www.cio.org.au/.
If you would like to know more about financial hardship, or where to go for help, there are a range of resources available. Some include:
ASIC’s moneysmart website also provides tools and links to apps to teach you about money and help you manage your finances at https://www.moneysmart.gov.au/tools-and-resources/calculators-and-apps.