The NCR has withdraw its recognition of the National Debt Mediation Association (NDMA), Debt Counsellors Association of South Africa (DCASA) and the Credit Ombud
Consumers have rights; however, they also have obligations when entering into credit agreements. Obligations such as honouring the terms and conditions of credit agreements they enter into.
There were 8,826 disputes lodged on information held on consumer credit records for the quarter ended December 2011, which was an increase of 24.8% quarter-on-quarter.
In the first nine months of 2011, 77 percent of credit provided was to people earning under R10 000 a month. They were less likely to receive a notice because of service delivery issues. The Post Office could not be seen as an agent for debt collection.
“Before consumers sign credit agreements, they need to understand the cost of credit and the terms and conditions of different credit agreements,” advises the NCR.
NCR urges consumers to actively manage their credit report. “You are more able to control your credit experiences if you are aware of your credit report. By doing this, your credit report will not come as a shock when you apply for credit or are denied credit”.
Banks have responded to this judgment by threatening to increase the costs of credit, make access to credit more difficult and be less sympathetic to its customers when they experience financial difficulties.
False and misleading adverts for credit are unlawful in terms of the National Credit Act. An advert for credit must highlight all the costs to the buyer. Unlawful advertising often tricks consumers into applying for credit that is expensive and un-affordable for the consumer.
The most serious problem is the extent of consumer indebtedness. There can be little doubt that South Africans have been on a credit binge over the last few years.
Eva Smith (Attorney) @ Lucid Living Debt counselling may not shield you from your creditors if they send you a letter of demand before you have applied for debt counselling.