Firming up against the banks
Financial industry under the microscope
A PARADE of pathetically apologetic executives has resumed as the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry sits for a fresh round of hearings in Melbourne this week.
Round seven of the Royal Commission is dedicated to policy questions arising from the first six rounds, giving executives the last opportunity to explain how they will fix misconduct endemic to Australia’s financial services sector.
From bribery, forgery and ‘liar loaning’, to the exploitation of the disabled and the dead, countless abhorrent practices of financial institutions have been unearthed since the Royal Commission began in December 2017.
How have the banks responded?
On Wednesday, submissions revealed former CBA chief Ian Narev received a performance bonus of 108 per cent ($2.86 million) while a crisis unfolded over the bank’s botched life insurance policies, alleged money laundering, and claims its credit insurance was miss-sold.
Of course, the scandals of the banking, superannuation, insurance and financial advisors, come as little surprise to lawyers.
In our personal injuries department, we witness daily the trauma caused by unfair decisions made by insurers which cost our clients any chance of rehabilitation or quality of life.
Our commercial litigation team also sees daily the impact of financial advisors who, with their pursuit of personal commissions, have given incorrect advice.
I am cynical about the government’s ability to implement significant reform to policy and laws after hearings to bring about genuine change in the financial sector.
It is unlikely criminal sanctions will flow from findings of the Royal Commission and it remains to be seen whether Commissioner Haynes refers specific cases of misconduct to the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Even Australian Securities and Investments Commission expressed in its submissions work had to be done to stop misconduct, but there was not enough evidence to instruct as to how.
So, there is only one way to teach the banks a lesson.
And that is to sue them, and hit them where it hurts.
The most common enquiry we are receiving at Attwood Marshall Lawyers is for grossly negligent or fraudulent financial advice.
Often, this advice is provided to elderly customers, who are encouraged to borrow funds on the security of their family home, and invest this money into a related financial institution owned by the bank.
Consumers should be treated fairly by financial institutions and help is available with your concerns regarding the Royal Commission.
Attwood Marshall Lawyers is ready to advocate for individuals who have been victims of misconduct within the banking industry.
Contact us today if you need a lawyer for the Banking Royal Commission.