What are Consumer Rights?

Given the current economic climate and the prevalence of debt, consumers should understand their rights when it comes to credit and debt. Rather than going in blind when signing up for credit, understanding The National Credit Act of South Africa will help consumers to better understand their rights regarding credit and debt.

The National Credit Act of South Africa created a host of rights for consumers when it was enacted. Before its promulgation, consumers were often in the dark when signing a credit agreement, but now, the new legislation ensures complete transparency from creditors when a consumer enters into an agreement.

These new rights are as follows:

  • Consumers have the right to apply for credit.
  • Consumers are guarded against discrimination when applying for credit or when they enter a credit agreement.
  • Consumers have the right to be told why they were refused credit.
  • Consumers have the right to be communicated with in an official language that is easy for them to understand and comprehend.
  • Consumers must be given information in easy, plain, and understandable language in order to ensure the transparency of the credit agreement.
  • Consumers have the right to confidentiality when it comes to their credit.
  • Consumers may access their credit records and if they notice irregularities, thoroughly challenge them.
  • Consumers have the right to seek debt help in the form of debt counselling, and creditors have an obligation to respect that.

These rights go a long way to ensuring that consumers are given a fair overview of the credit agreement they are considering, while at the same time ensuring that creditors do not take advantage of an eager consumer. This means that creditors are restricted when it comes to granting credit, as reckless lending is prohibited by the National Credit Act of South Africa.

Consumers are being given an upper hand when it comes to credit and they should take full advantage of their new rights.

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CREDIT ACT OF SOUTH AFRICA | What are consumer rights?