CCCFA “not understood” by politicians

The ACT Party believes the Credit Contracts and Consumer Finance Act (CCCFA) was not properly understood when it went through parliament and is now asking for a review.

Party leader David Seymour has written to the Finance and Expenditure Committee, asking for an inquiry into the impact of the changes.

The law has been widely criticised for making it harder for many ordinary people to get a loan and for imposing mountains of costly paperwork on brokers.

Seymour himself helped oversee the passage of the law through parliament but said the process was unclear.

“I was a member of the Finance and Expenditure Committee when this law was passed,” Seymour said.

“There was intense debate about the interest rates, auxiliary fees, and the terms of small, high-cost loans for vulnerable people.

“Everyone believed we were dealing with predatory lenders, such as those with lending trucks referred to in the Bill. Nobody believed that the law would affect every single person seeking credit, whether they were vulnerable or not, but that’s exactly what’s happened.”

So he has written to the committee and to its chair, Duncan Webb, asking for a review or at the very least a briefing into the “havoc” the law was causing.

“What is the point of the Committee having such power if it won’t use its powers to hear the public’s concerns about the laws it’s been involved in making?” Seymour wrote.

“I hope that the Committee will hold an inquiry into the operation of the law so that the people affected can have their say. If it agrees with their concerns, it should make recommendations to the Minister to fix the law as soon as possible.”

A response to Seymour’s letter has been sought from the committee chair, Duncan Webb.

Seymour copied his letter to the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, David Clark.

Meanwhile Clark has not yet responded to more criticism on the same subject.

He had been asked for an urgent meeting on the CCCFA with the industry group, Financial Advice New Zealand.

Its chief executive Katrina Shanks said she had received an acknowledgement of the Minister's receipt of the letter but not an agreement to actually meet.
But she said such a meeting was still needed and evidence of the negative impacts of the bill continued to mount up.

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