Campaign to stop funeral plan rip-offs for Indigenous
AUSTRALIAN consumer protection agencies today launched a campaign to help prevent Indigenous consumers from signing up for funeral plans that are expensive, complex and not suitable to their needs.
The Avoid a funeral rip-off campaign provides helpful advice for Indigenous Australians about their rights before buying a funeral plan or funeral cover under the Australian Consumer Law.
NSW Fair Trading Commissioner Rod Stowe said many Indigenous Australians were unaware of their rights and often targeted by dodgy traders.
"Indigenous consumers are losing significant amounts of money on funeral products, where they have not understood the contract and the costs involved," he said.
"Some consumers have signed up for funeral insurance without realising that if they cannot make all of the scheduled payments then the policy may be cancelled and they lose all of the money they have already paid."
A new video highlights the pros and cons of the various options to pay for a funeral and helps consumers make informed choices when purchasing funeral products and services.
Some Indigenous consumers aren't aware they may be entitled to community or government bereavement payments to help pay for the cost of a funeral.
Australian consumer protection agencies are taking proactive steps to educate Indigenous consumers and improve the behaviour of providers of funeral products and insurance.
Compliance officers are on the lookout for promoters of funeral products who are not doing the right thing by Indigenous consumers and failing to comply with the Australian Consumer Law.
The project is a joint consumer awareness initiative by all Commonwealth, State and Territory consumer protection agencies in Australia, through the National Indigenous Consumer Strategy Action Plan, taking action, gaining trust.