Newsletter 3 Consumer Protection Excellence NEWSLETTER EDITION 3 AUGUST 2008 Newsletter 3 ABOUT US CPE are proud to mention that we were ACCREDITED as PDA in March 2008 and have been in operation since the 1 April 2008 as PDA. We executed 10 distributions successfully and have no unallocated funds as we could trace and allocate every payment successfully within 30 days of receipt. Reconsolidation reports were sent to the NCR after completion of every distribution. CPE have a consumer base of 2439 and valued Debt Counsellors client base of 124. Newsletter 3 ? THE TEAM? expanded and our PLANNING STAFF now consist of MANAGING DIRECTOR RJ PIENAAR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR IT A Janse van Rensburg EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR CUSTOMER SERVICES V Hauptfleisch · · · · Data conversions. Training Collections and Distributions Credit Provider Support and Queries. · · · Client service. Distribution enquiries. Debit orders EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR IT A Janse van Rensburg CALL CENTRE Bi Tech Systems Control over possible Debtpro system errors that may occur. Data Conversion Software support CALL CENTRE MANAGER NATERCIA JARDIM Call centre Manager Natercia Jardim · · · · · · CPE contracts. Enquiries with regards to the Debtpro Programme and Debt Counselling. To assist new users with installation and usage of the Debtpro Programme. Telephonic training to Debt Counsellors on the Debtpro Programme. Debt counselling enquiries with regards to the distributions and Debit orders. Legal assistance to Debt Counsellors. Call centre support staff JC Sharon Newsletter 3 OUR OFFICES CPE ?outgrown? our premises and we are moving to Walter Sisulu street 91 Potchefstroom from first of October 2008. The new premises will enable us to have better training facilities, ADSL lines, ?connectivity compatibilities?, and call centre facilities. Watch out for our ?Grand Opening?! CPE SOFTWARE CPE Software underwent several upgrades in order to provide our Debt Counsellor's, Credit Providers and Consumers with the best up to date service. Our Software provides the following: • improved the layout of the client; there have been some changes to the order of the tabs to make it We more logical. • merged the bank tab with the case tab. We • Dependants tab have been changed, you can either use the traditional form or just add the number of dependants to a field. • entire process of adding a new client have been made keyboard friendly. The User will now able to The operate the program without a mouse. (Almost all of the keyboard shortcuts are in the help file) To switch between tabs you can press alt + the underlined letter on tab. For example “alt + c to open the Client browse and Ctrl arrow down to call a select browse”. It is a lot quicker to capture data without using a mouse. • already added a check in the previous version that validates if clients have a valid South African ID We number. If the id number appears in the colour red, it is not a valid RSA id number. • User will be able to lock a client after he/she was approved and uploaded, in order to avoid entering any The changes by mistake. No changes will be possible, except by unlocking the client. • included an option to change the monthly payment, override or lock the payment amount. We • added an annual escalation percentage for the payment prediction. We • included the option to select the account holder for a married couple in the creditor window. We • made provision for account types in the creditor window. This will be used to determine periods. All the We features for the account types are still under construction and will only be available in one of our future releases. • developed a control feature that search for duplicate creditors. All clients with duplicate creditors We approved status will be removed and these clients need to be reapproved after the duplicate creditors have been resolved. • now have the option to add VAT to your Debt Counsellor fee, if you are vat registered. To enable this you We need to add your vat number and vat percentage. • added a client age analysis report that shows the payments received from clients by CPE. We • Client distribution statement now shows the approximate interest that needs to be paid to the creditor. • client window will now indicate the approved status of the client and the creditor at CPE. If the creditor The is not approved at CPE no distributions for that creditor is possible. To view a more comprehensive explanation, visit our website, and go to downloads Doc 6. Newsletter 3 OUR OFFICES CPE successfully conducted 8 training sessions starting from May 2008 and have issued 95 training certificates. Our training sessions are aimed at practical individual training in order to promote roundtable discussions which benefit all learners. We recommend learners to bring along their laptop or files. Due to the costs involved, the last ?free of charge? training session will be on 22 August 2008. We will then do training sessions at a cost of R600 per learner. CPE will make it worth your while! Training on CPE Software is free of charge! Newsletter 3 WHAT IS HAPPENING AT THE COURTS The Decelerator Application is opposed by the Credit Providers and a Debt Counsellor who applied to join. We do not have a date on an apposed Role in the High Court yet. DCASA did distribute the Application and opposing affidavit to the Debt Counsellor's. If you did not receive such an e-mail you can contact DCASA or send an e-mail to CPE for us to send it to you. An issue at hand which is still opposed by the Providers in the Magistrate's Court, is ?jurisdiction?: Jurisdiction is still being opposed by various creditors even though an interim agreement by certain credit providers has been arranged that jurisdiction will not be used as a defence. The same credit providers that attend meetings and say that they won't defend the application on jurisdiction still continue to argue this point in limine. When we speak to the legal firms representing the above mentioned credit providers, they simply state that no instructions were received from their clients and therefore they shall continue to argue on every point possible. Therefore there is already mistrust between the odd credit provider and the Debt Counsellor in that the Debt Counsellor is still being opposed on the issue of Jurisdiction. Newsletter 3 GOSSIP COLUMN ? ? 4 New PDA's were accredited by the NCR. CPE obviously know we are the best and will always stay one step ahead........stick with us, you will not be disappointed. The NCR are doing pioneer work on the Debt Review Process, and to get a Credit Provider to cooperate really take some effort (as we all know) so please don't bother them with questions we can help with. Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com and CPE will assist as far as possible. QUOTE Every job is a self-portrait of the person who did it. Autograph your work with excellence. Newsletter 3 DID YOU KNOW? Document: 5 Introduction The role of the Debt Counsellor as intended by the Legislator and implicated by Section 3 read with Section 86 of the National Credit Act can be defined as the “assistance of an over-indebted consumer in the debt restructuring process by levelling the playing ground in the negotiation process with the credit providers, making informed recommendations to the courts regarding over-indebtedness, debt restructuring and reckless credit granting, and protecting consumers through counselling.” The role of the Debt Counsellor cannot stop with the granting of a Debt Relief Order, as the counselling process to debt rehabilitation has just begun. There is no “quick fix” for a consumer who has become over-indebted, as “reckless credit” or “easy credit” cannot alone be blamed for a consumer's over-indebtedness. A consumer who has become over-indebted will have to look in a mirror and realize why it happened or how it could have been prevented, In 90% of the cases it could have been prevented and it is the role of the Debt Counsellor to guide a consumer in the rehabilitation process in order to prevent a reoccurring “misfortune”. The “Aftercare” Principle When does “counselling” start? “Counselling” in the debt review process starts the day a consumer applies for debt review. Debt Counsellors who have been in practice will know that even with your first consultation you will have to “counsel” in order to determine bone fide's of the consumer and “real” over-indebtedness. Sometimes it would not be in the best interest of the consumer to go on with a debt review application, as a mere cutting on luxuries will not resolve the problem of over-indebtedness. Not something a consumer will easily grasp. There will also be scenarios where the consumer cannot see the end of the tunnel and sometimes even want to “put an end” to it all. This requires a far reaching counselling as you first have to change such a consumer's attitude towards himself, let him/her realize the importance of his existence and ensure him/her that there is an end to the tunnel before you can even attempt counselling on over-indebtedness. The essence of “counselling” in a Debt Counsellor's practice lies in the fact that the Counsellor must relate to the consumer's circumstances by putting himself in “the shoes of the consumer” and have the necessary empathy and discipline to guide the consumer in a debt rehabilitation process. The consumer must be in a position to trust his Debt Counsellor. When does “counselling” end? Counselling actually never ends. If a Debt Counsellor is successful in his debt rehabilitation counselling and the consumer is rehabilitated either by way of clearance certificate or otherwise, there would be a very significant relationship between the Debt Counsellor and the consumer. The consumer will most probably see the Debt Counsellor as a cornerstone and will turn back for some guidance sporadically. Newsletter 3 What is the “Aftercare Principle”? “Aftercare” is a combination of counselling, support and service. In a Debt Counselling Practice “Aftercare” would include, but would not be limited to: · · · · · · · · · · · Providing monthly distribution statements; Regular re-evaluation of the financial situation of the consumer; Follow-up on outstanding balances of credit providers and investigation of statements accordingly; Lodging of disputes where applicable; Updating of consumer information on the Payment Distribution Agent system; Providing assistance and guidance in case of emergency funds required; Assisting with budget planning for consumers; Revising the court order in cases where circumstances have changed and a lower re-structuring is required; Follow-up on the regularity of the consumer's payments; Obtain or advise a consumer to obtain legal advice where necessary; Communicate payment inquiries from credit providers with the Payment Distribution Agent and follow-up a resolution by the Payment Distribution Agent. What does Consumer Protection Excellence “Aftercare” include? Consumer Protection Excellence as an accredited Payment Distribution Agent provides “Aftercare” which includes the following • Collection of monies payable in accordance with the Debt Counsellor's instruction and proposals through debit order, stop order or cash deposits. • Distributions of monies to credit providers in accordance with the restructuring proposals or court orders, to the specific reference/account of the consumer as provided by the Debt Counsellor or where applicable on written mandate by the credit provider in an account allocated for the debt relief order; • Providing payment schedules to the credit provider and giving credit providers access via a secured access code to consumer profiles and reports to enquire on the progress and payments; • Providing proof of payment to the CREDIT PROVIDER if required; • Follow-up on e-mail reports from Debt Counsellor or/and consumer who has received notification or accusations of non distributions by the credit provider and reporting back to the Debt Counsellor via e-mail; • Providing distribution statements to Debt Counsellors and providing secured access code to the Debt Counsellor to follow up on their client profile and progress; • Assisting the Debt Counsellor and credit provider with technical support on the CPE system on site via “team viewer”; • Providing “free of charge” training on the CPE system; • Comprehensive Legal support system; • Call centre services; • Newsletters with up to date advise; • Information “tools”, brochures, power point presentations etc to inform and educate consumers; • Training on the Debt Review process as it evolves; • Training manuals, Text books, step by step guides; • Website with educational downloads and a question and answer facility. Conclusion • The Debt Review Process and Rehabilitation can only be successful if successful “Aftercare” is provided. Consumer Protection Excellence sees aftercare as a team effort based on trust, service and support between the Debt Counsellor and CPE to the benefit of the consumer and the credit provider.