Australian Financial Complaints Authority notes coming end of legacy jurisdiction

Maria Nikolova

On July 1, 2020, AFCA’s jurisdiction to consider complaints dating back to 2008 will end.

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) reminds the public that on July 1, 2020, its jurisdiction to consider complaints dating back to 2008 will end.

This means that from July 1, 2020 AFCA’s ability to consider complaints will, in most cases, only extend to matters where the complainant first became aware of the loss within the last six years, or within the last two years when a complaint has been through a financial firms’ internal dispute resolution process.

AFCA, Australia’s single external dispute resolution scheme for complaints about financial firms, will be unable to consider new lodgements for legacy complaints received from this date and AFCA’s standard time limits will apply. However, existing complaints made under the legacy jurisdiction will continue to progress and there will be no changes to AFCA’s case management approach for these complaints. In some circumstances, where a complaint falls outside of a time limit to consider a complaint, AFCA may contact the financial firm for consent to consider the complaint.

During its first year of operation, AFCA saw Australians in dispute with their bank, insurance provider, super fund, or other financial firms lodge 73,272 complaints with the financial sector’s new ombudsman. This represents a 40% increase in complaints received compared to AFCA’s predecessor schemes, which in the 2017/18 financial year received a combined total of 52,232 complaints. They have been awarded $185 million in compensation during the period between 1 November 2018 and 31 October 2019.

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