The right to be given reasons for credit being declined
If any of the following happens when you apply for credit, you are within your rights to request that the credit provider explain their reasoning in writing: You are refused credit.
You are offered a lower credit limit on a credit facility than the one you applied for. The credit limit of an existing credit facility is reduced.
A request to increase a credit limit under an existing credit facility is refused. Renewal of an expiring credit card or similar renewable credit facility is refused. If the credit provider responds in writing after any of the above occurred, and states that their decision is based on an unfavourable credit report received from a credit bureau they have to provide you with the name, address and other contact particulars of that credit bureau.
TOP TIP: If you have trouble interpreting your credit report, or require assistance in clearing you credit report of old or outdated information, the Libertine Consultants team can assist. Please note: This right should be exercised with caution. It is within the credit provider’s rights to apply to the Tribunal to limit their obligations in terms of this section if your requests for information are seen as burdensome or senseless (i.e. you waste their time repeatedly with petty requests).
The right to be given documents in an official language that you understand
South Africa has 11 beautiful official languages, and it is your right to request documents in an official language that you understand. In short, it means that a credit provider cannot circumvent the law by providing you with their response in a language that you do not understand.
DID YOU KNOW? Credit providers are forbidden from discriminating on the basis of race, age, political affiliation, sexual orientation, religious belief, or affiliation to any particular trade union. A consumer who is of the opinion that their right has been violated they can approach the Equality Court or may lodge a complaint with the NCR (National Credit Regulator).
There you have it – your second set of rights as a consumer in South Africa in 2019 explained. Check back soon for Part III, in which we will discuss the right to be given documents in clearly understandable language and the right to be given written documentation relating to the credit transaction. If you would like some more information in this regard, or feel that your rights have been ignored by a credit provider, please feel free to get in touch with Libertine Consultants.
We are here to assist you in living an abundant life free from the worry of unmanageable debt.