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ASIC poses questions on hawking reforms

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The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has posed 12 questions for feedback in a consultation paper released with draft regulation guidance for new hawking reforms.

The paper asks for input on forms of communication subject to prohibition and on which products are commonly bundled together or cross-sold and whether the laws will raise practical issues in those instances.

It seeks feedback on whether organisations agree with proposed guidance on offering products “that are within reasonable scope of a consumer’s consent” and whether giving refunds raises any practical issues in cases where hawking laws have been breached.

The laws, which take effect from October 5, extend strengthened prohibitions across financial products and update bans to take account of technological changes.

“These reforms will give consumers greater control over the circumstances in which they are offered products, and prevent consumers being approached with unwanted products on cold-calls or through other unsolicited contacts,” ASIC Commissioner Danielle Press said last week. “They will also prevent businesses relying indefinitely on consents from consumers.”

Responses on the regulatory guidance are due by August 17, with ASIC to publish its updated version in September.

Consultation details are available  here.