Superannuation Alert 09.11.17

- 9 November 2017

The Lander & Rogers Superannuation Alert is a brief overview of new developments in the superannuation industry.

Type Subject matter Source Description

ASIC

Paper released: Regulator Performance Framework: ASIC evidence metrics

Regular Performance Framework: ASIC evidence matrics

On 20 October 2017, ASIC issued a media release announcing the publication of updated evidence metrics for performance reporting. The document "sets out the key performance indicators (KPIs) of the Australian Government’s Regulator Performance Framework, [ASIC's] approach to self-assessment against these KPIs, and the evidence metrics [ASIC] will use to support [its] self-assessment".

ASIC

Report released: Annual Report 2016-17

Annual Report 2016-2017

On 26 October 2017, ASIC released its Annual Report for the 2016-17 financial year. Key outcomes highlighted by ASIC in the report are that during 2016-17, ASIC:

  • secured more than AU$837 million in compensation and remediation for Australian investors and consumers;
  • secured 20 criminal convictions, with 13 people imprisoned;
  • prosecuted 409 directors for 723 offences in failing to assist registered liquidators;
  • secured approximately AU$5.2 million in civil penalties;
  • banned 208 people and companies from providing financial services and credit;
  • disqualified 51 people from directing companies; and
  • issued 74 infringement notices, totalling AU$4.3 million.
SCT Report released: SCT Quarterly - Q3 2017

SCT Quarterly - Q3 2017

On 31 October 2017, the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal (SCT) released the SCT Quarterly for the third quarter of 2017.

In the third quarter of 2017, the SCT focussed on queries related to account balances, which made up 4.9% of the 533 complaints received by the SCT during the third quarter.

SCT Chairperson, Helen Davis, stated that "often, complaints related to account balances hinge on the clear communication of the trustee." The report lists some tips for clear communication which include the following:

  • "use plain English or, where quoting from a document that doesn't use plain English, provide a further explanation and/or an example";
  • "clearly state your position with respect and empathy"; and 
  • "ensure that important details are given equal weight in member communications". The report also includes case studies of recent decisions made by the SCT in relation to claw-backs of overpayments.
Treasury update AFCA Consultation Paper released

Establishment of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority Consultation Paper November 2017

On 3 November 2017, the Federal Government released a consultation paper on the establishment of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA).

The paper focusses on the operational aspects of AFCA that will differ from the current arrangements for the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), the Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) and the SCT. The paper covers issues in relation to the AFCA Terms of Reference, superannuation, governance, funding, and privacy.

Relevantly, the paper states that there could be additional matters specific to superannuation which are set out in the AFCA Terms of Reference or operational guidelines. The examples given include: 

  • "who can make a superannuation complaint"; 
  • "time limits for superannuation complaints other than death benefit complaints, where required, such as disability benefit complaints"; 
  • "superannuation specific exclusions to AFCA's jurisdiction"; 
  • "specific requirements for decision making on complex superannuation matters"; and
  • "exceptions to referrals back to internal dispute resolution for death benefit complaints, for example where statutory limits apply".

In addition, the paper addresses the issue of complaints being withdrawn from the SCT and considered afresh by AFCA.

  

Further information

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