The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) enforces and regulates company and financial services laws to protect consumers, investors and creditors.
An independent Australian government body, ASIC has regulated financial markets, securities, futures and corporations since January 1991. From 1998 they became responsible for consumer protection in superannuation, insurance, deposit taking and, from 2002, credit. ASIC report to the Commonwealth Parliament, the Treasurer and the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer.
The Australian Timeshare and Holiday Ownership Council Ltd (ATHOC) is Regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), under the Managed Investment Scheme. However, it should be stated that, Timeshare is not a Financial Investment but rather a Lifestyle Product.
The financial services regulator, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), issue Australian Financial Services Licenses (AFSL) to providers of financial services. One of the conditions of an AFSL is that the license holder must be a member of an approved External Dispute Resolution (EDR) scheme if they are dealing with retail clients. FOS is an approved EDR scheme.
As at the end of 2004 there were in excess of 2,500 providers of financial services who have nominated FOS as their EDR scheme. They are referred to as "Members" of FOS
The FOS process aims, in the first instance, to resolve complaints by mutual agreement between the parties. If this is not possible, the matter can be referred to the Panel or the Adjudicator who, pursuant to our Rules, has the ability to make a formal determination which is binding on the Member.
FOS role and terms of reference are specified in the Rules.
The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is an external dispute resolution (EDR) scheme that was established to provide free advice and assistance to consumers to help them in resolving complaints relating to members of the financial services industry, including life insurance, pooled superannuation trusts, funds management, financial advice, stock broking, investment advice and sales of financial or investment products. There is no charge to consumers for any service provided by FOS in handling complaints. FOS is a national service.
All Members of ATHOC are required to have an internal complaints resolution procedure that abide by the Australian Standards.
If any consumer or timeshare owner has a concern or complaint, it is essential that you contact that company and try to resolve your issue. Any external complaints organisation will send you to the company you have a complaint with first. As in any situation, it is important to discuss your issue with them and try to resolve any problems at this point.
Regarding a Resort Complaint
Due to changes by ASIC, as of September 30, 2007, ATHOC will no longer manage complaints for the individual resorts/Clubs. This will be handled internally by each individual organisation. If you are not satisfied with the outcome you should refer to the Office of Fair Trading in your State.
If you gone through the complaints process with a promoter/developer and are not happy with the outcome, your Complaint should be forwarded to The Financial Ombudsman Scheme (FOS). email@example.com or The Credit Ombudsman Service Limited (COSL) firstname.lastname@example.org. FOS and COSL are the external dispute scheme for financial products and services. All organisations that hold a Financial Services License must also be a member of an external dispute scheme.
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