AFCA has multiple projects underway to enhance our dispute resolution service and improve the experience for members and complainants.

Since the Independent Review report was released, AFCA has used the findings as key inputs into our existing projects to further strengthen their outputs and allow us to effectively respond to the review. AFCA has commenced or progressed work on 10 of the 14 recommendations.

This page includes the latest project update, as well as a summary of all the recommendations and AFCA's response.

For more information on the Independent Review process and final report visit the about the Independent Review page.

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July 2022 Update

Since March, AFCA has continued work in response to many of the review’s recommendations, with a focus on implementing the new AFCA funding model, timeliness reporting, and increasing visibility of AFCA’s Independent Assessor.

Funding model

AFCA’s new funding model launched on 1 July 2022. The model’s ‘user pays’ principle will ensure heavy users of AFCA’s services pay their fair share, while firms and industries which receive few or no complaints pay less. 

Many of the model’s features — including a simplified fee structure, the introduction of five free complaints, and reduced complaint fees—directly align with Independent Review recommendations 7 and 8 by ensuring the funding model design does not disincentivise firms from defending complaints, and by making AFCA’s fees and charges more transparent and easier to understand.  

AFCA would like to thank all those who took part in the consultation. The number of webinar attendees, views of the consultation resources, questions and submissions was the highest AFCA has ever received during a consultation.  

Feedback from stakeholders helped us improve the model even further by introducing small changes, such as progressive invoicing for members with higher annual user charges, and not charging a rules fee for complaints found to be outside AFCA’s jurisdiction.  

AFCA members will receive complaint invoices under the new model in August. 

For more information, please visit the funding model consultation report and new funding model page

Improving transparency and reporting of timeliness

AFCA has recently published our FY22 Data snapshot, which includes timeliness data. Over the past year, the average time to resolve a dispute decreased from 76 days (FY21) to 72 days (FY22). There has also been significant progress on closing complaints older than 12 months, reducing these cases from 4% of all complaints at AFCA to just 2.4%. 

This data indicates that AFCA’s recent work is having an impact and that members are continuing their efforts to resolve complaints in a timely manner.  
 
Later this year, to further address recommendation 5, the AFCA Annual Review 2022 will include more timeliness reporting, including: 

  • new timeliness measure to better represent where complaints resolve during AFCA’s process  
  • information about AFCA’s internal working group addressing complaints that remain unresolved beyond 12 months, and our continuous improvement program focused on operational efficiency  
  • an update on the development of AFCA’s new case management system and Member Portal, which will improve efficiency and provide more insights about complaints and timeliness. 

Improving visibility of the Independent Assessor 

To address recommendation 10, AFCA has published new easier-to-access information about the service complaints process. This includes: 

  • Simplified resources on how AFCA handles feedback and complaints about our service  
  • New information on the Independent Assessor including the steps to follow when lodging a complaint with the Independent Assessor and updated frequently asked questions 
  • AFCA is also developing short videos about the Independent Assessor and our service complaints and feedback process to ensure this information is available in multiple accessible formats. 

For updates on all 14 recommendations and how they will be used to enhance AFCA’s service, please explore the section below.

Recommendations icon

Recommendations dashboard

Select one or more checkboxes to filter recommendations. Each recommendation is labelled depending on whether AFCA's response is through "existing work" or a "new project". Click each recommendation to learn more or view all projects here.

 

1. Dealing with further issues raised during the complaint process

Status: On track for completion in 2024

New project

2. Ensuring all AFCA decisions consider what is fair in all circumstances

Status: On track for completion in 2023

Existing work underway

3. Not advocating or acting in a manner that compromises impartiality

Status: On track for completion in 2024

Existing work underway

4. Addressing poor conduct by some paid advocates

Status: On track for completion in 2023

Existing work underway

5. Improving transparency of timeliness and better managing timeliness expectations

Status: On track for completion in 2024

Existing work underway

6. Complaints from sophisticated or professional investors

Status: On track for completion in 2022

Existing work underway

7. Ensuring funding model design does not disincentivise firms from defending complaints

Status: On track for completion in 2022

Existing work underway

8. Improving transparency of AFCA fees and the services and activities they fund

Status: On track for completion in 2022

Existing work underway

12. Systemic issues that have been referred to ASIC or another regulator

Status: On track for completion in 2022

Existing work underway

13. Improving transparency of systemic issues in public reporting

Status: On track for completion in 2022

Existing work underway

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