Federal Court rules against bank’s credit card fees

5 December 2011
Australia's largest consumer class action is steaming ahead following a Federal Court judgment ruling that late payment fees imposed by the ANZ bank were capable of being penalties.

Maurice Blackburn's Andrew Watson said the decision was significant progress in the action which represents 34,000 ANZ bank customers.

"Today's judgment is a small step in the case but it is a significant leap for Australian bank customers," Mr Watson said.

"Late credit card fees are the bane of most people's existence. We know that many people rely on credit cards and the fees charged by the ANZ for late payment are exorbitant.

"This decision will be welcomed by mums and dads, small business owners and credit card holders everywhere.

"The fees we've won on, in relation to late payment on credit cards, are significant fees for bank consumers everywhere.

"You are late on the payment of the minimum amount and you get slugged with this ridiculous amount of money that bears no relationship to the fact you are a fraction late in the payment of whatever amount was due

"We will examine thoroughly the full judgment from Justice Gordon and it is likely we will appeal her decisions on the other fees and charges."

On 22 September, 2010 Maurice Blackburn issued proceedings in the Federal Court against in the ANZ bank in the first of a series of class actions against Australian banks for repayment of exception fees they have charged to their customers over the past six years.

Exception fees include honour and dishonour fees on bank accounts, as well as over limit fees and late payment fees on credit cards.

The class action is funded through IMF (Australia) Ltd on a "no win no charge" basis.

The class action is free to enter through IMF Funding and registrations are still open at www.financialredress.com.au. Financial Redress is a wholly owned subsidiary of IMF.