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Corporates put under 12 month paper bill notice

Wednesday, 31 October 2018
By Wayne Robinson

Win: Minsters tell billers they have 12 months to get their houses in order, total ban on bill fees may follow

Industry campaign group Keep Me Posted is celebrating a solid result with Consumer Affairs Ministers telling telcos, banks and utilities that they have 12 months to get the paper billing organised, or the government will intervene, and may totally ban charging for bills.

Today’s Consumer Affairs Forum saw Ministers consider the Decision Regulation Impact Statement on paper billing fees, and agreed to encourage businesses not to charge vulnerable or disadvantaged consumers to receive paper bills.

Businesses will be given a strict twelve-month period to increase their subscription to their existing exemption programs.

Ministers are sending a strong message to businesses stating if the increase in exemption program subscription is not met, they will consider a total ban on paper billing fees.

“While it is disappointing it wasn’t an outright ban, we respect the Consumer Affairs Forum decision and welcome the supportive sentiment. We hope that this result sends a clear message to businesses to apply common sense and do the right thing for all Australian consumers,” said Kellie Northwood, executive director, Keep Me Posted.

“This is clear acknowledgement from State and Federal politicians that our industry has a valued role to play amongst Australian society,” concluded Northwood.

Keep Me Posted will continue to provide the most vulnerable Australians assistance through their campaign initiatives and will continue to monitor the issues over the next twelve months.

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