Consumers have the right to understand both their financial situation and their rights when it comes to credit and debt, and once they have understood their rights, they have the right to exercise them. The National Credit Act of South Africa and the National Credit Regulator both exist to inform consumers of their rights, and give them a way to exercise these rights.
When the National Credit Act came into effect, it established the National Credit Regulator (NCR) to oversee the regulation of the credit industry in South Africa. One of the most important tasks of the NCR is to monitor credit practices and deal with complaints from consumers regarding unfair credit practices. In doing so, the NCR is enforcing the rights developed for consumers in the National Credit Act of South Africa, and rooting out unscrupulous credit practices.
The NCR also regulates the debt counselling industry by regulating the education and registration of debt counsellors, meaning that no one may practice as a debt counsellor unless they meet the stringent criteria of the NCR.
Another objective for the NCR is to educate consumers about their rights by informing them about debt relief remedies, the protection that The National Credit Act of South Africa affords them, and their right to complain about unfair credit practices. Consumers who have complaints can access the complaints section on the NCR website, or they contact them via e-mail.
The NCR also acts as a mediator between governmental institutions, creditors, and debtors. It is the bridge between these three that ensures effective communication and understanding of The National Credit Act of South Africa.
Ultimately the NCR is the credit watchdog of South Africa, and as an institution created by the National Credit Act, it has a responsibility to enforce the legislation and ensure that it is interpreted correctly.