Maurice Blackburn is conducting a class action against Westpac on behalf of persons who entered into unsuitable loans secured by residential property with Westpac from January 2011 and who have suffered, or are likely to, suffer loss.
The claim alleges that Westpac failed to comply with its responsible lending obligations in respect of loans issued on or after 1 January 2011 and that Westpac entered into loans when the loans were unsuitable for the borrower.
Update on class action progress
On 13 August 2019, the decision of Perram J in ASIC v Westpac Banking Corporation (Liability Trial)  FCA 1244 was handed down by the Federal Court. On 10 September 2019, ASIC filed an appeal with the Full Federal Court against that judgment. The case involved issues that are similar to those addressed in the Westpac Loans class action. We are giving careful consideration to Perram J’s judgment and the appeal to determine the potential impacts to the class action.
In the meantime, the class action is continuing and we are continuing to accept registrations for expressions of interest to participate in the matter. We will also continue to respond to queries from potential group members.
Further, on 4 September 2019, the Court made the following orders by consent:
a) the applicants file and serve an Amended Statement of Claim by 10 October 2019; and
b) the next hearing about procedural issues is scheduled for 29 October 2019.
This update is provided for your information. You are not required to do anything.
Am I eligible to register?
You can register your interest in participating in the class action if:
- you entered into a loan with Westpac on or from 1 January 2011 (Westpac Loan);
- you entered into the Westpac Loan in your own name (either solely or with someone else) and not on behalf of a company;
- the Westpac Loan was secured by a mortgage to Westpac in relation to a residential property that was owned, either solely or jointly, by you;
- the Westpac Loan was provided to you for the following purposes:
- personal, domestic or household purposes;
- purchase, renovate or improve residential property for investment purposes;
- refinance credit that had been provided to purchase, renovate or improve residential property for investment purposes.
However, you cannot register if the Westpac Loan:
- was entered into on behalf of a company;
- was with one of the following Westpac owned companies: St George, RAMS, Bank of Melbourne and BankSA.
- exceeded $5,000,000 for the purpose of investment in more than one residence; or
- was secured by a reverse mortgage.
You do not need to be able to prove at this stage that the Westpac Loan was unsuitable or that you have suffered loss. If you meet the criteria set out above you are eligible to register.
Registering your interest at this stage does not entitle you to claim compensation.
Ultimately, to be a group member and to be able to claim compensation in the action, you will need to show that:
- your loan application would have been declined by Westpac's Automated Decision System if either:
- your actual living expenses were used, or;
- the monthly loan repayments were assessed as the amount which would be required to repay the credit in full over the period after the end of any interest-only period, rather than over the entire term of the loan;
- the loan you were given was "unsuitable" because you would not be able to comply with the financial commitment under the loan at all or without substantial hardship; and
- you suffered loss as a result of the unsuitable loan.
How do I register?
To register, you must access the Registration Portal here.
As part of this registration process, you will be asked to provide information about your Westpac Loan/s including:
- loan account number,
- names of borrowers (and contact details) on the Westpac Loan contract;
- dates your entered the loans; and
- the term (duration) of the loan including the term of any interest only period.
Please ensure that you have any relevant documentation available when completing this registration.
If you are having difficulties in completing the registration form please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 1800 931 358.