Banks are NOT allowed to collect on a debt that has prescribed - Ombudsman
A recent discussion on The Money Show about the prescription of debt prompted "a tidal wave" of emails into Wendy Knowler's inbox.
The consumer journalist shares another hair-raising case study, this one highlighted by the Ombudsman for Banking Services (OBS) in its 2021 annual report released on Wednesday.
(Read more about the prescription of debt here)
The Ombudsman made it clear that banks are not allowed to collect on a debt that has prescribed.
The complainant in this case had taken out a personal loan with an unnamed bank in November 2011 relates Knowler, and must have defaulted on his payments along the way.
He was convinced that the debt had prescribed by 30 August 2020 when he saw it listed on his credit record with credit bureau Experian and lodged a dispute.
The bank contended that the complainant was not disputing the debt but was raising prescription, which can be regarded as an Acknowledgement of Debt, therefore prescription was interrupted.Wendy Knowler, Consumer journalist
"We had to draw the bank’s attention to the provisions of the National Credit Act (NCA)" reports the Ombudsman.
The outcome was that the bank in question had to accept the OBS position and close the file.
Listen to Knowler explain the details of the case and what to do if you're asked to pay what you think is a prescribed debt:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Banks are NOT allowed to collect on a debt that has prescribed - Ombudsman
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