Personal Insolvency Compliance Program

AFSA develops and publishes a Personal Insolvency Compliance Program that outlines how we will continue to maintain confidence in the personal insolvency system.

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Each year, after analysing data, trends and intelligence, AFSA develops and publishes a Personal Insolvency Compliance Program that outlines how we will continue to maintain confidence in the personal insolvency system.

The insolvency system plays a critical role in supporting confidence in the economy, particularly as Australia continues to navigate the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and other natural disasters. AFSA is a firm and fair regulator and delivers improved and equitable financial outcomes for consumers, business and the Australian community.  AFSA is also working hard to ensure the personal insolvency system can support vulnerable Australians and is prepared to deal with any future scenario.

The challenges of 2019–20 have demonstrated the importance of continuing to monitor trends, share information and respond to challenges that emerge.

The central focus of our annual personal insolvency compliance program each year is how best to support debtors and creditors by making compliance easier. Registered practitioners also have a crucial role in maintaining public confidence in the personal insolvency system and are the focus of several items within the proposed Insolvency Compliance Program 2021-22.

AFSA has developed a compliance program for 2021-22 with three focus areas:

1. Support vulnerable users of the insolvency system

When people are experiencing financial distress, they may not be able to make the right decisions for their circumstances. AFSA will provide objective and accurate information about their options and obligations. We will also take strong action against those who provide misleading information and untrustworthy advice.

2. Drive willing compliance and engagement

AFSA will support all participants in the insolvency system to willingly comply with their obligations to reduce costs, avoid penalties and provide a better experience for everyone involved. A big part of this will be to showcase what good looks like from every stakeholder perspective. We will focus on service design to make compliance easier and automated. We will also publish benchmarks, information and intelligence to ensure the insolvency profession understand our standards and can aspire to best practice. We will work with our co-regulators to use the full range of our powers to address non-compliance.

3. Strengthen trust and confidence in the insolvency profession

Those in financial difficulty rely on the specialist knowledge of insolvency practitioners to provide high-quality and trusted advice. We expect practitioners to maintain a thorough knowledge of insolvency practice and we will focus on strengthening practice management by monitoring controls and complaints. AFSA will continue to use data and intelligence to ensure the efficient administration of estates and will target areas like overcharging in remuneration, cybersecurity controls and unexplained delays.

AFSA invites your feedback and comments on the proposed focus areas for 2021-22. The opportunity to provide feedback closed COB Thursday 20 May.