Westpac needs to walk talk to right past wrongs

Slater and Gordon Lawyers is calling on Westpac to ‘walk the talk’ following comments from its CEO that the bank was committed to remediating the issues of the past.

His comments follow Westpac reaching a mega settlement with respect to six cases brought by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission. That settlement did not include an ASIC penalty proceeding commenced in April this year over mis-selling of consumer credit insurance.

Slater and Gordon Practice Group Leader Andrew Paull said if the bank was serious about righting the wrongs of the past they would immediately take steps to remediate the thousands of vulnerable Australians they ripped off through their junk insurance.

“Customers who trusted the big banks were ripped off and continue to be out of pocket despite a Royal Commission and numerous ASIC investigations which found Westpac’s behaviour was reprehensible,” Mr Paull said.

“In terms of junk insurance many people who purchased these insurance products had disabilities, were unemployed, or were critically ill, and therefore not eligible to claim against the insurance products.

“Others were simply led to believe the insurance they bought was free, or mandatory. Neither was the case.

“Despite this appalling behaviour, legal action continues to be most customers’ only recourse for recovering the millions they lost.

“And in our experience Westpac would rather litigate and do everything they can to avoid remediating customers.

“If Westpac were truly committed to righting the wrongs of the past, it’s time for the bank to come to the table and compensate the thousands of customers who were ripped off with these junk insurance products,” Mr Paull said.

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