'It's Easy to Say Don't Sign Anything': Debt Problems Among Recent Migrants from a Non-English Speaking Background

Alternative Law Journal, Vol. 44, No. 2, pp. 127-132, 2019

U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 857

8 Pages Posted: 24 Jan 2019 Last revised: 12 Nov 2019

See all articles by Evgenia Bourova

Evgenia Bourova

University of Melbourne - Law School

Ian Ramsay

Melbourne Law School - University of Melbourne

Paul Ali

University of Melbourne - Law School

Date Written: November 1, 2018

Abstract

Legal protections are in place to allow Australians in financial hardship to avoid negative credit ratings and bankruptcy by negotiating alternative payment arrangements with creditors. This article draws upon focus groups with consumer advocates to investigate whether these protections are meeting the needs of recent migrants from a non-English-speaking background. The authors argue that recent migrants receive inadequate support with the financial aspects of settlement in Australia, creating barriers to the resolution of debt problems. They recommend measures that could reduce the vulnerability of recent migrants in consumer transactions and assist them to resolve debt problems before they escalate.

Keywords: financial hardship, migrants, consumer protection, consumer credit, utilities debt

Suggested Citation

Bourova, Evgenia and Ramsay, Ian and Ali, Paul, 'It's Easy to Say Don't Sign Anything': Debt Problems Among Recent Migrants from a Non-English Speaking Background (November 1, 2018). Alternative Law Journal, Vol. 44, No. 2, pp. 127-132, 2019; U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 857. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3314981 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3314981

Evgenia Bourova

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Victoria, Victoria 3010
Australia

Ian Ramsay (Contact Author)

Melbourne Law School - University of Melbourne ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Victoria, Victoria 3010
Australia
+61 3 8344 5332 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://law.unimelb.edu.au/about/staff/ian-ramsay

Paul Ali

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

University Square
185 Pelham Street, Carlton
Victoria, Victoria 3010
Australia
+61 3 8344 1088 (Phone)
+61 3 8344 5285 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.unimelb.edu.au

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