Consumer Credit Law

Consumer credit law is an important field of law that regulates the provision of credit to consumers of goods and services and also includes chattel (goods) mortgages, personal loans and the law relating to credit cards. Given the costs and risks in borrowing money, it is essential that you have access to reliable legal advice to protect you in a dispute.

Led by Julian Van Leer, the consumer credit lawyers at Craddock Murray Neumann have gained significant expertise in this field over the years, protecting businesses, farmers and individual consumers. In fact, the firm has been involved in landmark litigation against a major credit provider that resulted in the government amending the credit laws in this field.
The team can provide expert advice and representation to clients with regard to:
  • enforceability of contracts subject to the Credit Act
  • contract disputes
  • litigation arising out of alleged breaches of the Act
  • Trade Practices Act disputes
  • cases where unfair practices are alleged.
Further information
Contact Craddock Murray Neumann Lawyers on (02) 8268 4000 for friendly professional service.
Contract: the rules of the game
Date: Jun 15, 2015

The traditionally accepted view of law is that it is an independent set of rules governing society routinely applied by reference to existing precedent. The law is considered autonomous and distinct from custom, morality, religion and politics. In western civilisations, legal systems are built on liberal foundations.

Private contractual arrangements and government intervention
Date: Jun 12, 2015

The law was not constructed on a bare canvas, but on value-laden foundations. Ordinarily, when a house is built on a sloping block, the nature of that slope determines the type of structure erected upon it. The structure is changed to suit the conditions of the landscape, not vice-versa. It is no different with the law.

Religious officers, contracts and legal relations
Date: Jun 11, 2015

In commercial transactions, the onus of proving (on the balance of probabilities) that a contract does not exist rests with the party disputing what courts presume to be an agreement intended to have legal force. For disputes concerning family members, courts take the viewpoint that “each house is a domain into which the King's writ does not seek to run, and to which his officers do not seek to be admitted”.

Consideration in contract law
Date: Jun 10, 2015

The doctrine of Consideration is concerned with the price paid for a promise. Consideration is something of legal value given in exchange for a promise.

A contract that is not a contract
Date: Jun 09, 2015

Equitable Estoppel is a cause of action that protects parties’ reliance on promises which have the appearance of a contract, but which do not satisfy the elements needed to create binding legal relations, that result in detriment to one party. The case of Waltons Stores (Interstate) Ltd v Maher is a landmark case which has greatly affected the common law of contract.

Why are some guarantees unenforceable?
Date: Nov 12, 2014

A guarantee is a promise by a third party to be liable to a lender for the obligations of a debtor, if the debtor defaults on their obligations. These are serious undertakings as they can render a guarantor liable for the whole amount owed by the debtor. Guarantees become enforceable when the debtor has defaulted on their obligations. However, there are numerous reasons why a guarantee may be unenforceable.

What is a guarantee?
Date: Nov 10, 2014

When a creditor provides a party with a loan or the provision of goods or services on credit, a sincere promise by the debtor to repay the loan is rarely satisfactory. Such a promise will be no good to a creditor if the debtor goes bankrupt, no matter how much they wanted to honour their obligations. Therefore it is normal for a creditor to require some other source of repayment they can look to if the worst should happen. This is known as a guarantee.

Capacity of Parties in Contracts
Date: Nov 03, 2014

Before ensuring the parties have fulfilled all the formal elements of a contract, a more fundamental issue to consider is whether both parties have capacity to enter into a contract. Capacity refers to a party’s legal ability to enter into a contract. It will not assist a party if they’ve simply made a mistake or misunderstood a contract. Rather, the requirement is intended to protect people from being taken advantage of who may not fully understand what they’re doing by reason of age, mental disability or intoxication.

Are some bank fees unenforceable? - Paciocco v ANZ [2014] FCA 35
Date: Oct 06, 2014

Bank customers in Australia are eagerly awaiting the outcome of ANZ’s appeal to the High Court after the Federal Court’s decision in February 2014 decided that the fees ANZ charge for the late payment of credit cards are unenforceable. The decision will have a huge impact on the banking industry. If the Federal Court’s decision prevails on appeal, it is likely that many of the fees charged by all the big banks will be challenged.

What is a managed investment scheme?
Date: Sep 14, 2014

Wading through the quagmire of financial services can be daunting, but being fully informed about, and understanding, your options will ensure you are choosing the best financial arrangement for your circumstances.

What is the difference between a retail client and a wholesale client?
Date: Sep 14, 2014

In considering managed financial schemes, you may have noticed a distinction between retail and wholesale clients. This distinction is important as a great deal of obligations and compliance requirements for managed investment schemes are dependent on whether they cater to retail or wholesale clients. For more information about managed investment schemes please refer to ‘What is a managed investment scheme?’.

Costs orders - who pays the costs of legal proceedings?
Date: Aug 25, 2014

The Court has power under Section 98 of the Civil Procedure Act 2005 to determine by whom, to whom and to what extent the costs of the proceedings are to be paid.

What are the requirements to be a licenced credit provider?
Date: Aug 15, 2014

The recent introduction of the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009 and related National Credit Code, have increased the regulation of credit providers in Australia. If your business engages in credit activities for personal, household or domestic purposes such as directly providing credit, making related suggestions or acting as an intermediary between a lender and a consumer, then you will probably need an Australian credit license to carry on your business. The licenses are administered and enforced by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

LITIGATION - Frequently Asked Questions
Date: Dec 04, 2012

Deciding how to settle a dispute - Choosing a process - Commencing litigation - Pre-trial procedures - Discontinuance or withdrawal - Enforcement of judgments - Costs of Litigation - Time limits - Lawyers

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