ASIC charges ME Bank in Federal Court

by Mike Wood27 May 2021

ASIC have filed charges against ME Bank in the Federal Court of Australia. The bank stands accused of false and misleading conduct, contravening the Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001 and the National Credit Code.

The breaches are alleged to have taken place between September 2016 and September 2018. No date has yet been set for the court case, but further details will be released in the near future.

Once ASIC has filed charges against a party, the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions is tasked with taking on the case.

ME Bank have been under fire from regulators for some time. Their former CEO, Jamie McPhee, left the company in July 2020 after over a decade of service following ASIC’s investigation of the company’s conduct over customer redraws during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The bank later released a statement that clarified their position. ME Bank announced that they had reported themselves to ASIC and that they had repaid all the customers who were affected by the alleged breaches within a year.

“ME Bank today announced it had been served by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions in relation to proceedings against ME Bank for alleged contraventions of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001 and National Credit Code,” it read.

“The alleged contraventions concern home loan customer communications in the period September 2016 to September 2018, and arise from issues that were addressed in 2019. These issues were reported by ME to ASIC in October 2018.”

“Affected customers were remediated by June 2019. Remediation to affected customers was in the order of $105,000. ME confirms the matters identified in relation to the home loan customer communications have been addressed and are not ongoing. As these matters are before the Court, ME does not intend to comment further at this time.”