Codes of practice are voluntary, so businesses can decide which ones they will subscribe to. When an organisation signs up to a code, they agree to abide by the standards set out in the code and to be accountable to their customers.
Do you know what code your organisation has signed up to?
Banking Code of Practice
The Banking Code is a set of enforceable standards that customers, small businesses, and their guarantors can expect from Australian banks. The Code provides safeguards and protections not set out in the law. It complements the law and, in some areas, sets higher standards than the law. The code is supported by an independent Banking Code Compliance Committee (BCCC) that investigates alleged breaches of the Code.
According to ABS and APRA data, banks have around 80% share of the lending market, and most major Australian banks subscribe to this code. Organisations covered by this code often expect any referring brokers to abide by some elements of the code, especially with regard to vulnerable customers, co-borrowers and guarantors. For example, some lenders require mortgage brokers to sign declarations or attestations verifying that they have conducted specific vulnerable customer assessments.
Find out more at the Australian Banking Association website.
Customer Owned Banking Code of Practice
The Customer Owned Banking Association (COBA) represents Australia’s customer owned banking sector, including mutual banks, credit unions and building societies. COBA administers the Customer Owned Banking Code of Practice (COBCOP), which outlines the commitments that signatories make to their customers.
Read more about the code at the COBA website.
Mortgage & Finance Association of Australia Code of Practice
The Mortgage & Finance Association (MFAA) represents the mortgage and finance broking industry, and has more than 14,000 members throughout Australia. Members of this association are expected to uphold the MFAA Code of Practice, which ensures members follow laws and regulations and member’s business activities are ethical and fair.
Find out more on the MFAA website.
Finance Brokers Association of Australia Code of Conduct
Finance Brokers Association of Australia has developed a Code of Practice that can be adopted by industry professionals who offer consumer finance, commercial finance, lease and motor vehicle finance, business and debtor finance, as finance/mortgage brokers.
Read the code at the FBAA website.
National Credit Providers Association
The National Credit Providers Association (NCPA) is the peak national industry body representing the Small Amount Consumer Lending Industry in Australia. NCPA represents companies that provide Small Amount Credit Contracts (often called SACCs, or Small Amount Loans) and Medium Amount Credit Contracts (called MACCs, or Medium Amount Loans). Members include lending organisations such as Cash Converters, Direct Personal Loans, City Finance, Cash Stop Financial, Jacaranda Finance and Fair Go Finance.
Members are bound by the NCPA’s Code of Conduct, which outlines how members will deal with their customers and observe responsible lending obligations and practices.
Find out more at the NCPA website.
Consumer Household Equipment Rental Providers Association Code of Conduct
Consumer Household Equipment Rental Providers Association (CHERPA) is the peak body for the household goods rental (Consumer Lease) industry in Australia. CHERPA members must adhere to a strict Code of Conduct that helps protect consumers from being overcharged and overloaded.
Find out more at the CHERPA website.
Australian Finance Industry Association
The Australian Finance Industry Association (AFIA) represents over 150 members, including bank and non-bank lenders, neobanks, finance companies, fintechs, providers of vehicle and equipment finance, car rental and fleet providers, and service providers in the finance industry.
AFIA has a range of Codes of Practice, outlining industry standards in different financial services organisations, including:
- Online Small Business Lenders Code of Practice
- Buy Now Pay Later Code of Practice
- Insurance Premium Funding Code of Practice
- Car Rental Code of Practice
Find out more about these codes on the AFIA website.