How to ensure your lender is licensed

Licensed lenders must show their ACL Number

All lenders who are licensed under Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) must show their 6-digit licence number in very prominent places. For instance, on a website, it is usually found on the front page towards the bottom of the information on that page and will look something like this: Australian Credit Licence 999 999.

This credit licence number should also be shown on the loan documents that you receive from your lender and, if your lender operates from a shop front, then the credit licence number must be displayed prominently somewhere in the office. If you can’t find the credit licence number then ask for it to be pointed out to you. If the lender you approach for a loan cannot show you this number on their website, documents, or in their office then you need to decline any loan they may be offering you as they are not licensed to give you a loan. You can check the ASIC website in the professional registers area on the following link.

Click here for a link to a govenrment website where you can check if the lender offering you a loan is licensed to lend the type of loan you are seeking.

Once you arrive at that link, you will need to select ‘Credit Licensee’ when you are asked to select the name of the register that needs to be searched.

If your proposed lender is not licensed, then you may be subject to extremely high interest rates and lots of extra charges. You may also experience lots of problems with the operation of the loan and you will not have any consumer protection or be able to get any help as they will be operating outside the law.

Ensure your financial safety

The best way to ensure that you are dealing with an Australian Credit Licensed lender is to look for the NCPA logo which tells you the lender is a Member of the Association. The distinctive logo for the National Credit Providers Association is a trusted brand to look for.

Members of the NCPA must be Australian Licensed Credit Providers which means they have gone through strict registration processes under Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) and are bound by the National Consumer Credit Protection Act (NCCP) 2009. The NCCP Act, among other things, details strict rules and regulations about the supply of credit in the small loan industry and especially about a lender’s “responsible lending obligations” to you as a borrower.

The NCPA logo points the way

So look for lenders which carry the NCPA logo. It is your pathway to an Australian Credit Licensed and trusted lender. You will see the NCPA logo (see below) displayed either in a lender’s office or on their website. If you can’t see this logo, then ask if the lender is a Member of NCPA. If not, then contact a lender who is a Member. It will be your safeguard of being treated fairly.