The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has re-authorised the Mortgage and Finance Association of Australia’s (MFAA) Disciplinary Rules until June 2019.
The MFAA is a voluntary industry organisation that represents over 10,000 mortgage and finance brokers, mortgage managers and aggregators.
Members are required to comply with the MFAA governance regime, including a Code of Practice which outlines the requirements and professional standards expected of members. The Disciplinary Rules for which the MFAA is seeking authorisation enforce this governance regime.
The Rules contain the process for the investigation of complaints against members, expulsion of members and hearing of appeals against refused applications for membership or accreditation.
“The MFAA's membership requirements impose higher educational and professional standards on its members than required under legislation,” ACCC Acting Chair Dr Michael Schaper said.
“The Disciplinary Rules provide an effective means for enforcing these standards.”
“The arrangements are likely to continue to result in public benefits by improving consumer confidence and consumer protection in the mortgage and broking industries," Dr Schaper said.
The MFAA’s Disciplinary Rules were initially authorised by the ACCC in 2004 and were subsequently re-authorised in 2009.
Since the Disciplinary Rules were last considered by the ACCC a national regulatory regime for the credit industry, the National Consumer Credit Protection Act commenced in 2010.
Authorisation provides immunity from court action for conduct that might otherwise raise concerns under the competition provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010. Broadly, the ACCC may grant an authorisation when it is satisfied that the public benefit from the conduct outweighs any public detriment.
Further information about the application for authorisation is available on the public register.