Third Round of Banking Royal Commission Hearings to Focus on Lending to Small and Medium Businesses

Widespread misconduct in Banking Industry

The Banking Royal Commission has so far revealed widespread misconduct in relation to consumer lending and financial advice provided by financial institutions. We expect that this trend will follow onto the third round of public hearings which will commence on 21 May 2018. This round will cover important issues in relation to the conduct of financial services entities during its dealings with small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

The Commission intends to cover 5 key topics:

  1. Responsible lending to small businesses;
  2. Approach of banks to enforcement, management and monitoring of loans to businesses;
  3. Product and account administration;
  4. Extension of unfair contract terms legislation to small business contracts; and
  5. The Code of Banking Practice.

Calls for public submissions

We urge owners and employees of small and medium businesses who have experienced unethical behaviour during interactions with financial services providers to make a submission to the Royal Commission. Employees of financial institutions (e.g. ANZ, Bank of Queensland, CBA, Westpac, Suncorp, NAB) who have witnessed unethical behaviour in relation to the topics above are also urged to make submissions. We strongly encourage anyone with useful information to come forward and to contribute to an inquiry that can assist in addressing widespread misconduct.

The Royal Commission is only as effective as the submissions and evidence presented before it. Public submissions have now closed. If the instance that you are called to give evidence before the Royal Commission, O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors can assist you in the preparation of your statement.

If you have potential evidence of financial sector misconduct or conduct that falls below community standards or expectations, O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors can assist you in your liaison with the Royal Commission. Call us on (02) 9261 4281.