Court Review of the Decisions of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority and its Predecessors

Journal of Civil Litigation and Practice, Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 6-30, 2019

30 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2019

See all articles by Ian Ramsay

Ian Ramsay

Melbourne Law School - University of Melbourne

Miranda Webster

University of Melbourne - Law School

Date Written: January 11, 2019

Abstract

The Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) commenced operation on 1 November 2018. Its purpose is to address complaints by consumers and small businesses in relation to products and services provided by financial firms. It is expected to deal with more than 50,000 complaints in its first year. Given the important role of AFCA, the authors analyse the cases in which decisions made by predecessor bodies of AFCA have been challenged in the courts and, based on this analysis, propose a set of principles that should be applied by the courts in determining whether an AFCA decision is reviewable. The authors note that significant policy issues are at stake in relation to the grounds for court review of an AFCA decision. Court review of AFCA decisions can be important for accountability. Yet AFCA was established to be an alternative to courts and therefore the objectives of low-cost, prompt and informal dispute resolution by AFCA should not be adversely affected by excessive court review of its decisions.

Keywords: dispute resolution; consumer complaints; court review

Suggested Citation

Ramsay, Ian and Webster, Miranda, Court Review of the Decisions of the Australian Financial Complaints Authority and its Predecessors (January 11, 2019). Journal of Civil Litigation and Practice, Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 6-30, 2019. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3434147

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

Miranda Webster

University of Melbourne - Law School ( email )

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

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